Piers Morgan weighed in on the Ivy League swimming controversy revolving around trans woman Lia Thomas’ record-breaking winning streak, calling it “obviously, grotesquely unfair.”
During a 20-minute “Fox & Friends” segment Saturday filmed at Florida’s Daytona International Speedway, Morgan said he supports trans rights, but not the University of Pennsylvania student’s participation in women’s swimming competitions.
“You can support trans rights – as I do – and you can believe that trans people can have full equality and fairness, right to the point where it creates a new inequality,” he said, referring to ongoing debates about fairness versus inclusion that have surfaced with Thomas’ domination and the NCAA’s new policy regarding trans and gender diverse athletic eligibility.
Check out the video below for Morgan’s comments:
Thomas came under the spotlight after a highly successful season in which she achieved the fastest times in the country in the women’s 200 and 500 freestyle swims, qualifying her for March’s NCAA National Championships. The 22-year-old, who began her collegiate swimming career on the men’s team, began hormone replacement therapy approximately two and a half years ago.
The NCAA previously required that trans athletes undergo one year of testosterone suppression before competing on a women’s team. On Feb. 1, USA Swimming updated that policy to require 36 months of recorded therapy, possibly shutting Thomas out of March’s championships. Then, on Feb. 10, NCAA announced that it would not adopt the new guidelines for the current school year, reopening the door for Thomas’ participation.
In the intervening week, 16 anonymous members of the University of Pennsylvania’s swimming team sent a letter to the university and Ivy League officials claiming that Thomas has an “unfair advantage” and asking them to accept the proposed policy revisions. In the letter, the signatories said that her participation took “competitive opportunities” away from them, including an invitation to the prestigious Ivy League championship meet.
At Friday night’s 200-yard competition at the Ivy League women’s championships, Thomas not only won but set a record of 1 minute and 43.12 seconds. The day before, she also won the 500-yard freestyle and picked up her third title at Saturday’s 100-yard freestyle.
On “Fox & Friends,” Morgan implied that his sympathies lie with Thomas’ teammates, blaming her continued ability to compete on “cancel culture.”
“To watch somebody who has such a superior advantage over women born with female biological bodies storming to victory in these races and for everyone to feel too cowed to speak up about this for fear of being labeled transphobic is exactly what I wrote my book about,” Morgan continued. “It is completely mad that this is happening and everyone feels too scared to say this is crazy.”
Agreeing with Morgan, “Fox & Friends” co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy misgendered Thomas, saying Thomas was “a really mediocre swimmer for a guy.”
“This is the point,” Morgan replied. “When she used to compete against men–”
Before he could finish his point, a plane flew overhead, cutting him off. “That’s the sound of freedom,” Campos-Duffy said.