The Republican Governor of Mississippi, Tate Reeves, signed this Thursday, March 18, a bill to prohibit athletes who assume they are transgender from competing on girls’ school teams. The rule will come into force as of July 1.
The bill passed with overwhelming support in the House of Representatives and the state Senate in a vote of 81-28 and 34-9, respectively.
The law establishes that sports teams or sport events between schools that are sponsored by a public primary or secondary school shall be expressly designated on the basis of biological sex”, and it determines that in athletic teams or sports designated as female, “only women or girls will participate and will not be open to students of the male sex”.
In case of divergences, “a student may establish their sex by submitting a signed medical statement based solely on: (a) the student’s internal and external reproductive anatomy; (b) the student’s normal endogenously produced levels of testosterone; and (c) an analysis of the student’s genetic makeup”.
Mississippi is the first American state to enact a law that protects women and girls from being forced to race against men who consider themselves women in sports tournaments. In recent weeks, more than 20 Republican-ruled states have presented similar initiatives.
Kristi Noem, the Republican Governor of South Dakota, is also expected to sign a bill to the same effect approved by the state Congress in the coming days.
“This important piece of legislation will ensure that Mississippi girls have a fair chance in public sports; women and girls should not be forced to compete against biological men,” Reeves said at the time of signing.
The new Mississippi law is a protective action of the local executive and legislative powers against the executive order signed by President Joe Biden, which allows all “transgender” students to choose whether to participate in male or female teams in sports activities.
On his Twitter account, Reeves, posted: “I never imagined dealing with this, but President Biden left us no choice.”