Mack Beggs is a state wrestling champion who has been down a tougher road than most. As a transgender wrestler, he is subject to a sizable amount of discrimination and this unfair treatment reminds us of how far we have to go as a society. When he was banned from competing with the boys, he joined the girls’ league. He has now won his second consecutive title.
He’s been on hormone replacement therapy for the past 18 months but that has not stopped him from asking to compete with the rest of the boys. Unfortunately, these pleas have continued to fall onto the deafest of ears. The University Interscholastic League of Texas says that since he has a female’s birth certificate, he must wrestle with the ladies. This is not a position that he ever wanted to place himself in.
If it were up to him, he would be wrestling against the boys as he should be. Mack knows that he cannot expect instant change to take place. All he can do is try his best to bring attention to the topic and try to spread the word. In time, the rest of the world will catch up to those of us who have already made their peace with the changes that are taking place in society.
When Mack won his second title, there was a mixed reaction from the crowd. Of course, some observers are going to take issue with the fact that a young man is wrestling against women. In their minds, the level of difficulty that Mack experiences is lower than the one he would experience if he wrestled against other young men. This is not something that he can control, though.
As the Trump administration passes laws that are designed to remove the rights that transgender students have fought for, this is a debate that does not look destined to die down anytime soon. As for Mack, all he wants to do is wrestle and focus on his craft. He did not ask for this battle and he does not wish to stoke the flames of debate any further.
He is not going to let the haters drag him down. Even though much of the audience jeered his recent victory and one of his opponents expressed disgust at his ability to compete in this gender class, he is not about to stop fighting for his rights. We wish Mack all of the best and hope that the state of Texas makes the right choice so that kids like him no longer have to fight.