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Hamilton. From Facebook.

“Soul Surfer” takes stand against men competing in women’s sports

The story of Bethany Hamilton, the Christian surfer who survived a shark attack, was told in the 2011 movie “Soul Surfer.” Last weekend, she found support online from fellow athletes after she spoke out against the World Surf League’s rules that will allow biological men to compete as women in surfing events.

Hamilton said in a video posted to her Instagram that she would not be participating in WSL events if the rule remains. The WSL said transgender female athletes need to maintain a testosterone level of 5 nmol/L for at least a year to participate in the women’s division. Hamilton said in her video she would rather see WSL create a new division.

“I personally think that the best solution would be to create a different division so that all can have a fair opportunity to showcase their passion and talent — and I think it’s really hard to imagine what the future of women’s surfing will be like in 15 to 20 years down the road if we move forward allowing this major change,” she said.

Olympic gold medalist skier Julia Mancuso and NCAA All-American swimmer Riley Gaines expressed support for Hamilton in the Instagram comments section of her video.

“I support you. Bethany,” Mancuso wrote. “Thanks for speaking up for all women and girls out there. Those are all interesting questions to navigate this difficult topic, and let’s hope we can keep fighting for the future of women’s sports.”

Gaines added: “THANK YOU for using your platform to share this. I can’t express how inspiring this is.”

Former competitive surfing champion Shane Dorian also added his name to those who supported Hamilton.

“Speak your truth! Thank you for being brave enough to stand up for what you believe,” he wrote. “Don’t listen to people who hurl the word transphobic at anyone who’s beliefs don’t align perfectly with theirs. These are complicated problems with no clear solution. Regardless, there many people who love and support the trans community who agree with you on these issues.”

Hamilton went on to clarify her points in the comments.

“I was messaging with a friend who is a part of the (LGBTQ) community, and I really don’t think at this point there is a solution that will please everyone,” she wrote. “There are different world views and that is part of life. I may not have the perfect answer. But I do feel the way I do and will continue to stand firm in what I shared here.”

She is currently being attacked by trans activists and those on the left for her defense of women’s sports.

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