Author Topic: The right to compete?  (Read 2658 times)

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Online daniel1948

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2018, 10:01:28 AM »
I heard a discussion about this issue (trans women in sports) and the thrust of the discussion was that although trans women seem to have an advantage in muscle size over cis women, many or most top-level athletes have some genetic advantage over the majority of us. They are taller or bigger or have an extremely rare mix of muscle fiber types. I remember a female marathon champion when I first started jogging and subscribed to a runner’s magazine. Her legs were longer in proportion to her height, and by a large margin, than just about anybody on the planet.

The question of whether or not it’s “fair” for trans women to compete against cis women is irrelevant because nothing about competitive sports is fair. Competitive sports are inherently unfair.

And on a separate note, the ubiquitous use of performance-enhancing drugs throughout high-level competitive sports is by itself a good enough reason to put an end to competition. Not only the athletes at the highest level, but also kids who aspire to reach those levels, are doing themselves serious physical damage by using such drugs. The adulation of champion athletes drives kids to destroy their health in pursuit of a goal that maybe one in ten thousand or one in a hundred thousand will achieve.
Daniel
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Offline seamas

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2018, 11:23:39 AM »
I wasn't particularly athletic as a kid, my parents never put us in any little league or extracurricular sports activity.
I think I would have definitely benefited from it, and reject the notion that there is something unhealthy about sports and competition. Hell I work in an industry catering to it and can see the clearly how people who engage in it --things like Tennis, etc remain youthful and healthy even in their later years.

My two children (14 and 12) have been in a USATF track and field club for about five years, I think I have been to maybe a hundred competitions--outdoor track and field, cross country and indoor track--including any number of regional events--some of which had showcase events and trials for elite Olympic level athletes.
If there is a downside to this activity I must be completely blind to it.

That said, the idea that there should be an elimination of separate events between male and female is ridiculous for kids over the age of 8 or 9. After this age the differences are just stark. In an event like the 1600 meter, the top women competitor wouldn't even qualify to compete in the men's even based on time alone.
My kids participated in a NYRR one- mile event this past autumn, later that day was the Elite section, which included a recent women's world champion and several national champions. The time for the winner was a full 10 seconds slower than any of the men who competed. Even today the records for women's one mile are akin to the minimum that most good college programs would want for the men.

Now, how transgender people should fit into this is something I do not have an answer for, but anyone who comes up with an easy answer is probably not giving it enough thought.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2018, 11:32:44 AM by seamas »

Offline RGU

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2018, 01:24:48 PM »
More information that I found which was interesting
https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/08/we-thought-female-athletes-were-catching-up-to-men-but-theyre-not/260927/

Men have an average of 13.6 to 17.5 grams of hemoglobin per decalliter in their blood. Women have 12.0 to 15.5 g/dl.

There is an overlap of men and women, but not when you get to the elite status. Should that be a factor?

I do not know if I can even address the whole there should be no competition, winners, and losers in sports as it is silly to me... at an adult level. I do get the crazy parent and young kids, but that is a separate issue.
I cannot imagine a sport with no winner. when do you stop? what is the point?
I understand exercise - but I have never played a sport harder than when I was competing. Take Volleyball which I like playing,without competition you get the lazy just hit it types, the ones the laugh when they hit it into the net or out of bounds 30 ft. (take their beer away) but if you keep score and compete, win or lose it is more fun and more of a workout. Me chasing a ball across the road because someone smashed the crap out of it is not good exercise.

Offline Tassie Dave

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2018, 01:56:32 PM »
That said, the idea that there should be an elimination of separate events between male and female is ridiculous for kids over the age of 8 or 9. After this age the differences are just stark. In an event like the 1600 meter, the top women competitor wouldn't even qualify to compete in the men's even based on time alone.
My kids participated in a NYRR one- mile event this past autumn, later that day was the Elite section, which included a recent women's world champion and several national champions. The time for the winner was a full 10 seconds slower than any of the men who competed. Even today the records for women's one mile are akin to the minimum that most good college programs would want for the men.

Now, how transgender people should fit into this is something I do not have an answer for, but anyone who comes up with an easy answer is probably not giving it enough thought.

You're right. that's why each case has to be assessed individually. Most transgender women will be ok to compete, but there will be cases where they have an unfair superiority over their cis-female competitors.


Offline gebobs

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2018, 02:54:02 PM »
Hoo boy...we as a society have painted ourselves into a dichotomous gender corner and reality is not so cleanly cut.

Radiolab presented a series called Gonads. To date I think there are six episodes. But the one that hits most closely to this thread was this one.

https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/dutee

Offline seamas

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2018, 05:01:38 PM »
That said, the idea that there should be an elimination of separate events between male and female is ridiculous for kids over the age of 8 or 9. After this age the differences are just stark. In an event like the 1600 meter, the top women competitor wouldn't even qualify to compete in the men's even based on time alone.
My kids participated in a NYRR one- mile event this past autumn, later that day was the Elite section, which included a recent women's world champion and several national champions. The time for the winner was a full 10 seconds slower than any of the men who competed. Even today the records for women's one mile are akin to the minimum that most good college programs would want for the men.

Now, how transgender people should fit into this is something I do not have an answer for, but anyone who comes up with an easy answer is probably not giving it enough thought.

You're right. that's why each case has to be assessed individually. Most transgender women will be ok to compete, but there will be cases where they have an unfair superiority over their cis-female competitors.

How do you figure that?

Offline Mr. Beagle

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2018, 07:05:22 PM »
When it comes to sex stuff, I increasingly see "normal" as just a statistic. Society is all about reinforcing "normal," which is why they call them "norms."
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Offline Tassie Dave

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2018, 01:13:11 AM »
That said, the idea that there should be an elimination of separate events between male and female is ridiculous for kids over the age of 8 or 9. After this age the differences are just stark. In an event like the 1600 meter, the top women competitor wouldn't even qualify to compete in the men's even based on time alone.
My kids participated in a NYRR one- mile event this past autumn, later that day was the Elite section, which included a recent women's world champion and several national champions. The time for the winner was a full 10 seconds slower than any of the men who competed. Even today the records for women's one mile are akin to the minimum that most good college programs would want for the men.

Now, how transgender people should fit into this is something I do not have an answer for, but anyone who comes up with an easy answer is probably not giving it enough thought.

You're right. that's why each case has to be assessed individually. Most transgender women will be ok to compete, but there will be cases where they have an unfair superiority over their cis-female competitors.

How do you figure that?

I'm assuming, (probably a huge mistake  ;) ), that transgender women will know the guidelines and protocol of their sport, (re: transgender participation), before they try to compete. i.e. testosterone level etc (which applies to cis-females as well) and make sure they qualify under those guidelines.
In some sports their will need to be the transgender trailblazers who have to fight for the right to compete and push for guidelines and protocols

Transgender is a very broad term. I would be very surprised if anyone supported a transgender sportsperson competing in women's sport by just self identifying as a woman, but with an adult male's muscle mass and testosterone level.


Online daniel1948

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2018, 11:10:47 AM »
... I cannot imagine a sport with no winner. when do you stop? what is the point?

... Take Volleyball which I like playing,without competition you get the lazy just hit it types, the ones the laugh when they hit it into the net or out of bounds 30 ft. (take their beer away) but if you keep score and compete, win or lose it is more fun and more of a workout.

On Sunday we had a “race” with no rules, time-keeping, or winners. There was a marked course, a start and finish line, a safety boat, and a horn to announce the start. Anything that floats (without a motor) entered. We paddled around a marker buoy and back. Turn around before the buoy if you want to. Try to get ahead of the boat next to you if your crew wanted to. Or not. Everybody had fun. The boat I was in was effectively last and we all had a blast. There was no announcement of a winner, and nobody I was aware of claimed to have won. There were big smiles all around and nobody was disappointed because they didn’t win. That’s a non-competitive sport. Most days I go out paddling with one of the clubs. Sometimes we paddle hard, other times we paddle easier. Anybody who gets tired can stop paddling at any time. There’s no criticism from anybody. That’s a non-competitive sport. If we see a whale we’re all going to paddle as hard as we can, but there’s still no criticism if someone needs to stop or just isn’t paddling “hard enough.”

The most fun I ever had playing ping pong was with my sister when we were little. Instead of trying to win the point, we both tried to keep the ball going. That was a cooperative sport. Tennis or volleyball could be played the same way with just as much athleticism and enthusiasm but none of the viciousness or rancor.

I used to enter 10K fun runs. After the jocks who were trying to win, all the rest of us were just having fun. Running my own pace and enjoying the company of those around me was a non-competitive sport.

When I was in school there was none of this. Win the game or you were excoriated. There were no opportunities for sport/exercise without competition.
Daniel
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Offline bimble

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2018, 01:50:23 PM »

The most fun I ever had playing ping pong was with my sister when we were little. Instead of trying to win the point, we both tried to keep the ball going. That was a cooperative sport. Tennis or volleyball could be played the same way with just as much athleticism and enthusiasm but none of the viciousness or rancor.


though surely most of the athleticism in those sports, once you aquire some skill levels, is in the attempt to win the point. I suspect Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal could probably keep a rally going for hours because they have the ability to control the ball and put it right in a nice place for their "opponant" to return, with barely a step or two.

And if they are like any of the elite athletes I know, I suspect they'd rather have a hard game, even if one of them lost.

Offline Tassie Dave

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2018, 01:55:44 PM »
There is a place for sport just for fun or as a form of non-competitive exercise and play.

But to get most sports fans to pay and attend there has to be a competition. Even in "so called" friendlies I expect my sides to play to win and to be competitive.


Offline RGU

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #26 on: December 19, 2018, 04:39:14 PM »
Daniel1948 - that is great and I am sure it is fun, just as ride mountain bikes with others and there is no winner. But that is because we are not racing, we are riding. If it was a race, there would be a winner.
What you describe are activities that require a level of exertion or athleticism. It is play or exercise, but it is not a sport.

noun
1. an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment.

You describe ping pong you and your sister played, you did not compete against each other, but I am sure you competed with each other against yourselves. Unless the two of you did not keep track of how many hits or how long you kept the ball going, which i doubt. Every time I played like that as a kid we would count, 20 hits, 22 hits, and continue until we beat our record... competing with ourselves. Many people do this, trying to break their own times or distances. It is still competitiveness.

I cannot imagine this world you envision where nobody competes.

Online daniel1948

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2018, 05:05:44 PM »
There is a place for sport just for fun or as a form of non-competitive exercise and play.

But to get most sports fans to pay and attend there has to be a competition. Even in "so called" friendlies I expect my sides to play to win and to be competitive.



So to maintain a business that makes money for the owners, we encourage the vast majority of adults to be sedentary and pay to watch others play, and at the same time discourage those kids who need exercise the most from participating.

That’s a bad system.

My system deprives a few dozen or a hundred or so sports team owners of a way to make vast sums of money, deprives adults of an excuse to be sedentary, watching others play, and encourages everyone, kids and adults alike, to be active, and encourages the kids who are good at sports to welcome into their team the kids who are not. Because if there’s no winner, then having the klutz or the fat kid on your team doesn’t hurt you.

My system deprives a few athletes of a job which is dangerous and leaves most of them with injuries for the rest of their life, but provides them and more like them with much safer employment teaching kids to exercise safely while having fun.
Daniel
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Offline seamas

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2018, 05:11:01 PM »
Ignoring the fact that most people who engage in sports ENJOY the competition is a great way to bolster your argument, but it is still ignoring an important fact.

Do you feel the same about competitive chess? All board games?


Online daniel1948

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Re: The right to compete?
« Reply #29 on: December 19, 2018, 05:13:15 PM »
RGU: Nope, we didn’t keep track or try to beat our record. Now, ping pong is hardly a very athletic activity, but our way could be just as active as the competitive way because we were kids and not very good at the game, so we often had to reach or run or dive for the ball to keep it in play, because if it went off the table or bounced too many times, or whatever, we’d still keep it going if we could.

Cooperation can be even more fun than competition; it can be just as physical, for the health benefits; and it can be safer because nobody has the attitude that you should injure yourself to make a point “for the team.” We all know plenty of cases of athletes, pro and kids alike, who have injured themselves and been lionized for it, because they “took one for the team.”
Daniel
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