Transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox, who came out publicly earlier this week, could be barred from fighting as a woman, according to reports on Sports Illustrated and now on ESPN. ESPN's MMA reporter Franklin McNeil is also reporting that Fox's next scheduled fight, set for April 20, has now been postponed by the event promoter so Fox can fight when she is licensed.
According to reports, there are two issues at hand.
First is the red herring. Fox allegedly stated incorrectly on her Florida license application that she is licensed in California. Fox claims she thought she was licensed there when filling out the application, but in fact her application for a license had not yet been fully processed.
While this could delay her application, this is a bogus issue and is only being used because of issue number two...
Fox did not disclose the fact that she is transgender. However, she was under not obligation to do so. She is legally female, and she disclosed that. The real issue is the fact that she is transgender, whether she disclosed it or not.
McNeil believes the transphobia is so strong that it's doubtful the FSBC will license Fox:
I would really be surprised if she's allowed to compete as a woman. I would be very surprised. But, at this point members of the commission are telling me that she will not...They will not comment on anything beforehand. But it would very much surprise me.
Championship Fighting Alliance CEO Jorge De La Noval thinks the whole issue is bogus and Fox should be allowed to fight. From ESPN.com:
"As a promoter, obviously everyone who comes into my office, what I see is a fighter," De La Noval said. "I don't ask anyone what their sexual preference is. What they do with their personal life is not my business. She's a sweet girl. ... And where we stand as a company is that she's a female. She has an Illinois driver's license (as a female). She's a female and she's definitely a fighter. I just don't see how anybody can revoke her license."