UFC star “Suga” Sean O’Malley criticized the practice of allowing men who “identify” as women to compete against female fighters.
He was specifically referring to transgender fighter Alana McLaughlin’s victory over Celine Provost earlier this month.
“I don’t think that’s okay,” O’Malley said during an episode of his podcast. “I just don’t think that’s okay … in just competing in sports, I mean, especially mixed.
“It’s like she had testosterone for, who knows, 20 to 30 years of her life, and now I’m a girl.”
“You could tell that’s a dude,” O’Malley said. “A jacked girl. I mean, look at those arms.”
The Washington Examiner reported on O’Malley’s remarks:
McLaughlin, 38, was born male and began transitioning to a female in 2010 after leaving the U.S. Army Special Forces, Outsports.com reported. McLaughlin defeated Celine Provost, a biologically female fighter, earlier this month.
McLaughlin began training in MMA a year ago and was cleared to compete against women by the Florida State Boxing Commission after her hormone levels were approved.
Former UFC champion Michael Bisping also commented on McLaughlin’s victory, saying he believes it isn’t right for someone born with “the body of the man” to compete in fights against biological females.
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JULY 09: Sean O’Malley poses during a ceremonial weigh in for UFC 264 at T-Mobile Arena on July 09, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
“I’m not here to talk about transgender rights, you can identify as whatever you want,” Bisping said, Low Kick MMA reported. “But I do believe that if you’re a woman that feels trapped in a man’s body, there are certain advantages that you should have to give up. If you have the body of a man, competing against girls or women, when you’re using your body to beat someone unconscious, has to be one of those things you sacrifice.
“If you want to play volleyball, soccer, be my guest,” Bisping said. “But in a sport that you beat someone into submission or unconsciousness, it shouldn’t be allowed. It’s unfair to women’s MMA.”
McLaughlin wore a shirt after the fight that read “End Trans Genocide,” the Examiner reported.