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Transgender man comes out on GWU women's basketball team

November 1, 2010 - 04:30 PM
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Kye Allums, left, comes out (Photo: Associated Press)

This season, the George Washington University women's basketball team will welcome a man on the court. On Nov. 13, Junior guard Kye Allums, formerly Kay-Kay, could become the first publicly transgender person to play Division 1 NCAA basketball.

Allums joined the women's team in 2008 as a freshman; he came out as as man to his teammates during his sophomore year. Last summer, Allums disclosed his gender identity to the team's head coach, Mike Bozeman, and arranged to officially come out on the team this season.

Both Bozeman and the George Washington University have released statements in support of Allums, but the support of transgender athletes within the NCAA remains largely untested. The athletic association currently defers to a student's state-issued ID in order to determine a player's gender. That's not too much of a problem for a guy like Allums, who wants to continue to play on a team consistent with his sex at birth. But the policy could end up posing difficulties for trans men and women athletes who want to play on teams consistent with their outward gender identities.

In October, the National Center for Lesbian Rights released a study proposing new model policies for dealing with transgender athletes. The NCLR suggests that schools and athletic associations draft rules that "focus on maximizing inclusiveness, rather than restricting students’ opportunities to participate based on their gender identity or expression."

Allums plans on undergoing sex-reassignment surgery next summer, but he's holding off on one aspect of his physical transition until he finishes his senior season: taking masculine hormones would certainly disqualify Allums from the sport. He plans on starting the treatments in April of 2012.

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  1. Progressivescholar Progressivescholar

    Progressive Scholar

    Nov 04, 2010 - 08:27:42 PM

    Kari Wallace: Let's get some things clear. Kye is a female-to-male transgender person. This means that he was born with a female body and was raised as a girl. In our society, we are taught that there are only two genders and that there are very strict norms and roles for each gender. In reality, gender is something that comes from within a person and is not dictated by our sexual orientation, our body, our hormones, or anything else. Not every female is feminine, and not every male is masculine. We all have masculine and feminine characteristics, but our society forces the feminine for females and vice versa. Second, someone's gender identity is not the same as their sexual orientation. A transgender person can be heterosexual. We don't know anything about Kye's sexual orientation, so your comment "u can like other men" makes no sense. It is quite clear from your comment that you are ignorant on transgender issues. Before you go telling people what should or should not be allowed, maybe you should educate yourself on the issue and gain some perspective. There is a video on youtube called "transgender basics" that might be a good start.

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  2. Ali K Ali K

    Ali K

    Nov 04, 2010 - 07:28:31 PM

    Amanda, I know you mean well, but Kye is already a "he", even without GRS. People's gender isn't dependent on the state of their genitals.

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    • Ali K Ali K

      Ali K

      Nov 04, 2010 - 07:29:19 PM

      Er, that's for Amanda Steppo, not Hess.

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