Schuyler Bailar, a transgender swimmer from Harvard, is featured in a segment tonight on "60 Minutes," which airs on CBS at 7 p.m. EDT and PDT, 6 p.m. CDT and MDT.
"I know I made the right decision," Bailar told Lesley Stahl. "But I think sometimes, 'Oh, I really wish I could compete as a girl because I want to win that race.' It's fun to win." It's a different world on the men's team, Bailar says. "I am working the same amount for 16th place. And that's OK...it has other kinds of glory in it."
At first, Bailar's plan was to lead something of a double life — living as a man on Harvard's campus, but still swimming as a woman on the women's team. Harvard women's swimming coach Stephanie Morawski had recruited Bailar as a woman, but encouraged Bailar to make the life-changing decision. "I was struggling watching Schuyler because he wanted to reinvent himself...as a male, but was being held back because of the athletic piece of it," she says.
It's great that the media are taking more notice of transgender issues, especially in sport. It's more important in light of the laws being passed by states that target trans people. For example, in today's Los Angeles Times, Bill Plashke has a wonderful column on a Santa Monica trans high school baseball player Jake Hofheimer and how he has been accepted by his team.