Was there a nefarious goal behind the man's loss in women's weightlifting?
Gavin Hubbard believes that he is a woman.* His delusion, while sad, would be inconsequential were it not for the fact that he took a space on New Zealand's women's Olympic weightlifting team, knocking out an actual woman, 18-year-old Roviel Detenamo. Those who believe that women and men are biologically different objected, claiming that his lifetime of testosterone gave him a huge physical advantage. With him as a precedent, men will regularly squeeze actual women out from sports. However, at the Olympics, Hubbard missed the snatch three times, knocking himself out of medal contention. The question is whether he lost because he choked or because he was making a political point.
Hubbard, who lived and competed in weightlifting as a man until he was 35, is now 43 and competes in the women's 87+ kilogram division. He lost badly:
Twice the barbell, which had 120kg and then 125kg on it, fell behind her [sic] after she [sic] had snatched it powerfully from the floor. On another occasion Hubbard got it off the ground and appeared to have made a successive lift, only for two of the three judges to rule she [sic] did not have full control.
She [sic] left the arena having smiled and drawn a heart with her [sic] hands.
Here's the interesting thing about his failures: when Hubbard was competing as a man, he was snatching 135 kg, and that has diminished, whether because of his age or his female hormones. Thus, after Hubbard started taking female hormones, he snatched at 131 kg in 2017, something he did again in 2019. He's succeeded in snatching 127 kg several times, as well as 125 kg. What matters is that he ought to have handled a 120 kg barbell easily...but he didn't.
The big question, then, is whether Hubbard caved in the crunch or if there's more going on. Paula Bolyard gives him the benefit of the doubt, noting that, at 43, he's way on the shady side of a weightlifter's career. Also, the media find Hubbard fascinating, which put a lot of pressure on him.
But something very important resulted from his failure: people who said it wouldn't harm women to have men compete in their sports can now point to Hubbard as the perfect example of why it's not a problem for men to compete against women. Multiple tweets triumphantly offer some variation of "See, your predictions were all wrong."
What? Laurel Hubbard, trans athlete, was eliminated from competition after not performing as well as the cis athletes who will be competing in the Olympic finals?— Amanda Jetté Knox (@MavenOfMayhem) August 2, 2021
B-b-but how is she going to grab all the gold medals with her “unfair advantage”?!
Do the transphobes celebrating Laurel Hubbard going out of the weightlifting at the first stage not realise this totally demolishes their 'unfair advantage' argument...?— Jack Duncan🔻 (@JackDunc1) August 2, 2021
Others, however, were less excited. Many continued to say that, regardless of his loss, he is a man and had no business in that arena. Many suggested that Hubbard intentionally dropped the weights to destroy the argument that men will invariably beat women:
Laurel hubbard lost on purpose not because he was pressured by the backlash but to actually give the false narrative that a transwomen doesn’t have an advantage.— bratty (@brattyamore) August 3, 2021
He did that on purpose to gain sympathy. These people are toxic and narcissist #LaurelHubbard #LaurelHubbardisaMAN #TransWomenareWomen https://t.co/Hoi5XIYwSs— Bunter (@bunterbyethen) August 3, 2021
I knew this was gonna happen. He probably even threw it on purpose.#LaurelHubbard #Olympics #Tokyo2020 https://t.co/W32gZ8syLS— joy, M.Div. (@joymdiv) August 2, 2021
The response to this argument from the left went something like this: "You guys are mean, stupid, and transphobic."
So now the narrative is changing. First it's "Laurel Hubbard has a competitive advantage". Now it's "But she is twice their age!" They are even starting to accuse her of losing on purpose so as to undermine the first narrative.— Natalie (she/her) 🏳️⚧️ (@natgrace79) August 2, 2021
I wish they'd just be honest about their hatred.
But is it so unreasonable to believe that Hubbard would do the equivalent of throwing a fight? History shows us that people do it all the time. Usually, they do it for money or, if mafia stories are true, to avoid swimming with cement shoes on. Why in the world wouldn't Hubbard sacrifice a gold medal for the greater good of men competing in women's sports? He's an activist, and, for him, that's arguably the most important issue in his life.
Ultimately, there's no way to prove whether Hubbard fell apart under the pressure or whether he sacrificed himself for the transgender cause. Either way, it doesn't matter. As the Allie Beth Stuckey tweet above says, "He's still a man, and men shouldn't compete against women in weightlifting." That's the larger principle, and one man's failure shouldn't change the principle.
*In ordinary social interactions, I'll respect people's chosen names, no matter how ridiculous they are. I will not do so for activists whose delusions are the vehicle by which they are aggressively destroying Western society.
Image: Gavin Hubbard (cropped and edited in Pixlr). YouTube screen grab.
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