Fox News contributor Tyrus threatens to assault trans kids in swimming pools

Tyrus Fox News

Fox News contributor and retired wrestler Tyrus threatened to assault trans kids who swim in the same pool as his daughters. 

Tyrus made the vile comment on the Tuesday (12 September) edition of Fox News’ Gutfeld! which featured Riley Gaines, a former competitive swimmer and anti-trans activist who campaigns against the participation of trans women in women’s sports. 

During the segment, the show’s contributors discussed recent comments made by sports commentator Keith Olbermann about Gaines, where he called her a “nasty, stupid, unsuccessful transphobe” who “sucked at swimming”. 

Sharing his thoughts, Tyrus said: “The comment to say she sucked, right? She did fight a trained man in a swimming pool to a draw, and he had her by weight, muscle, and length. That’s pretty [censored] impressive. Let’s not forget that.” 

He appeared to reference Lia Thomas, the first openly transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division I national championship. 

Gaines and Thomas tied for fifth place in the 200 freestyle final at the NCAA Women’s Championships in February 2022. 

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“A lot of women would have probably been a little intimidated because I’m sure he was doing what men do, intimidate, stare down, all that type – if you watch it back,” Tyrus said.

“He was cocky, and she showed that it takes a super woman athlete to have to compete with him.

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The Fox News contributor then said that he would “snatch” a trans child from a swimming pool if they were swimming at the same meet as his daughters.

He continued: “My daughters all swim and if – and I go to as many meets as I can, and I’m watching because I’ll be the dad to get arrested for snatching one out of the pool.”

Tyrus then called trans athletes “just creepy men who can’t compete”, saying they “use the feelings of the left to support them because they want to win”. 

The ex-wrestler went on to reinforce the right-wing notion that trans women are out to “steal things from women” because “they can’t take them from [men]”. 

NCAA SWIMMING: MAR 18 Women's Swimming and Diving Championships
University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas and Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines react after finishing tied for 5th in the 200 Freestyle finals at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships on 18 March 2022. (Rich von Biberstein / Icon Sportswire / Getty Images)

Thomas, who much of the culture war around trans inclusion in sports has centred on, said back in 2022 that trans people do not transition to ‘steal’ medals – they transition to be their authentic selves. 

“That’s part of what kept me from transitioning for so long,” she told ABC. “The thing is, I wasn’t sure if I could continue swimming and doing the sport that I love.”

“The mental and emotional changes actually happened very quickly,” she added of transitioning. 

“I was feeling a lot better mentally, I was less depressed and I lost muscle mass. I became a lot weaker and a lot slower in the water.”

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“Trans people don’t transition for athletics,” Thomas continued. “We transition to be happy and authentic and our true selves.

“Trans women are a very small minority of all athletes. The NCAA rules regarding trans women competing in women’s sports have been around for 10-plus years.

“And we haven’t seen any massive wave of trans women dominating.”

In recent months, a vast number of states across America have enacted legislation banning trans people from competing in the gender they align with. 

The wave of anti-trans laws comes at a time of increased anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric, with states also cracking down on gender-affirming care for adults and minors, drag shows and freedom of speech. 

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