A long-serving USA Swimming official has handed in her resignation after three decades in the sport because she is disappointed with the NCAA’s allowance of a biological male being allowed to compete in all-female competitions.
In an interview on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” Cynthia Millen said she stepped down from officiating USA Swimming meets after 30 years because she said she can’t just sit and watch as female swimmers are “thrown under the bus” by “biological” male competitors.
Her comments come as University of Pennsylvania transgender swimmer Lia Thomas is setting Ivy League records in the sport after competing as a male for two years before switching this year to female competition.
“The fact is that swimming is a sport in which bodies compete against bodies. Identities do not compete against identities,” Millen said of her decision to quit just a few days before the U.S. Paralympics Swimming National Championships in Greensboro, N.C. “Men are different from women, men swimmers are different from women, and they will always be faster than women.”
The former swimming official said Thomas’ record-setting dominance of collegiate women’s swimming was grossly unfair in her resignation letter, in which she wrote that she can “no longer participate in a sport that allows biological men to compete against women.”
Under NCAA rules, transgender athletes must have a year’s worth of testosterone suppression therapy before they can compete as females. But Millen said that really doesn’t matter.
“It’s horrible,” Millen told guest host Sean Duffy. “The statement for women then is you do not matter, what you do is not important, and little girls are going to be thrown under the bus by all of this.”
She went on to claim that Thomas is “going to be destroying women’s swimming” before noting further that “USA swimming recognizes that boys swim differently from girls.” And she noted the physical differences between men and women, saying that “boys will always have larger lung capacity, larger hearts, greater circulation, a bigger skeleton, and less fat.”
“While Lia Thomas is a child of God, he is a biological male who is competing against women,” Millen declared. “And no matter how much testosterone suppression drugs he takes, he will always be a biological male and have the advantage.”
Thomas recently dominated women’s swimming at the Zippy Invitational at the University of Akron by setting a new Ivy League record with a winning time of 4:34:06 in the 500-yard freestyle finals.
The former USA Swimming official told Duffy it would be a “travesty to throw away” all of the accomplishments made by previous female Olympic swimmers including Janet Evans and Jenny Thompson.
“All these women who worked so hard before Title IX when they didn’t have the opportunities that men had. It would be such a shame, such a travesty to throw it away now. This is what will happen,” she predicted.
Following Thomas’ record-setting performance, some U of Penn parents who were upset by it and wrote a letter to the NCAA earlier this month demanding a change in the current rules governing the sport.
“At stake here is the integrity of women’s sports. The precedent being set – one in which women do not have a protected and equitable space to compete – is a direct threat to female athletes in every sport. What are the boundaries? How is this in line with the NCAA’s commitment to providing a fair environment for student-athletes?” said the letter.
“It is the responsibility of the NCAA to address the matter with an official statement. As the governing body, it is unfair and irresponsible to leave the onus on Lia, Lia’s teammates, Lia’s coaches, UPenn athletics and the Ivy League,” the letter noted further. “And it is unfair and irresponsible to Lia to allow the media to dictate the narrative without the participation of the NCAA.”