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CNN claims biological sex is a ‘disputed term’ and gender cannot be determined at birth, gets criticised on social media

CNN claimed, "It's not possible to know a person's gender identity at birth, and there is no consensus criteria for assigning sex at birth."

A CNN report that discusses the executive orders banning transgender athletes from women’s sports claims that ‘it is not possible to know a person’s gender identity at birth, and there are no consensus criteria for assigning sex at birth.’ The statement is facing criticism since it was published on March 30.

The executive orders by South Dakota’s governor

South Dakota’s governor Kristi Noem, passed two executive orders on Monday (local time) banning transgender girls and women from competing in women’s sports at public high schools and colleges. In her orders, she said, “Only girls should play girls’ sports. Given the legislature’s failure to accept my proposed revisions to HB 1217, I am immediately signing two executive orders to address this issue: one to protect fairness in K-12 athletics, and another to do so in college athletics.”

She further added that she would be working with legislative leaders to schedule a special legislative session in late May or early June. “The special session will address this important issue, as well as others. The implementation of medicinal marijuana will require consideration of additional legislation. And the latest congressional spending bill may require legislative action once we fully understand its impact on our state budget,” she added.

The first order says, “only females, based on their biological sex, as reflected on their birth certificates or affidavit provided upon initial enrollment in accordance with SDCL 13-27-3,1 shall participate in any girls’ or women’s athletic event sanctioned by a public school, a school district, or an association meeting the requirements of SDCL 13-36-4.” The second order was on similar lines, but it dealt with athletic events sanctioned by an institution of higher education under the control of the Board of Regents.

CNN’s report claims ‘it is impossible to determine sex at birth’

In its report, CNN said that though the two executive orders do not mention transgender athletes, they do refer to the supposed harms of the participation of “males” in women’s athletics. It claimed that the orders are ‘transphobic’ as the orders suggest that ‘transgender women are not women.’ It further said that the term “biological sex” is a disputed one that refers to the sex as listening on students’ original birth certificate.

Going a step further, CNN claimed that “It’s not possible to know a person’s gender identity at birth, and there is no consensus criteria for assigning sex at birth.”

Netizens criticized CNN

Erick Erickson, a radio host, said on Twitter, “This is CNN. Unbelievable.”

Stephanie Slade, Managing Editor at Reason, said, “I’m sorry. Is this supposed to be a hard news writeup?”

She questioned how ‘biological sex’ is a disputed term, but ‘transphobic’ isn’t. Slade further asked how the report was a breaking news for the political section and urged CNN Politics to revisit the report.

David Reaboi, a Freelance journalist, said, “DIG THIS INSANITY. This is a CNN *news story*”.

Another user said, “biological sex is a disputed term –> this is why the US is suffering from a cultural civil war right now. We can’t even agree on simple things like biological sex? How is it disputed? Biological sex is a real thing. It..just is. It’s science.”

Devan Cole, the author of the CNN report, did not respond to the critics.

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