A new survey from Gallup found 62% of Americans believe trans athletes should not be allowed to play in accordance with their gender identity, following a wave of bills across the US which seek to limit trans participation in sports. The data, gathered from the 1,016 respondents of Gallup’s annual Values and Beliefs survey, found only 10% of Republican voters believed trans athletes should be able to play in the category which aligns with their gender identity, compared to 55% of Democrats.
Furthermore, 66% said they supported trans people serving in the military, compared to 71% when the same survey was conducted in 2019. 31% of all respondents said they know someone who identifies as transgender, with those who know someone who is trans being more likely to agree with trans inclusion in sports compared to those who do not. In addition, those who personally know someone who is trans were more likely to be supportive of trans people’s right to openly serve in the military.
Over 30 states have considered or are still debating anti-trans bills this year, many of which aim to limit target young trans people’s access to school sports. Despite the increased hostility towards trans athletes, a 2021 report found there is no evidence to “support the claim that allowing transgender athletes to participate will reduce or harm participation in girls’ sports”. It suggested anti-trans rhetoric relies on “scare tactics, stereotypes, and unwarranted claims that transgender women have a physiological advantage over cisgender women.”