Athlete Quinn will become the first non-binary athlete to win a medal at the Olympic Games. On Friday, he will participate in the final of the football championship with the Canadian national team against Sweden. A player at OL Reign, the defender hopes to become a model for more tolerance.
In 2016, in Rio, Rebecca Catherine Quinn won the bronze medal in the football championship under the colors of the Canadian team. Five years later, the athlete, who will play the final against Sweden on Friday, August 6, is about to win another medal, gold or silver, but this time under the name Quinn.
In September 2020, in a long message posted on his Instagram accountThis athlete declared himself transgender and non-binary. “Exit is hard,” the 25-year-old wrote, did not identify himself as a man or a woman and would like to be identified by neutral pronouns. “While I’ve always lived openly as a transgender person with the people I love around me for years, I always wondered when I was going to say it in public. I want to be visible to the queer community that is not used to seeing one of its members on a football field.”
‘I really understood who I am’
Born in Toronto, Quinn started playing football at the age of five in a very athletic family. His father was a rugby player and his mother was a basketball player. The Canadian continued her studies in the United States at Duke University in North Carolina. This is where the change takes place in his mind, According to So Foot : “I really understood who I am. Before that, I couldn’t explain what I felt. We live in such a binary world, and since my childhood I have been commanded to act and present myself in this way. Anything I deviated from was viewed negatively.”
In 2017, his talent exploded. The Washington Spirit picks the athlete in third place, the Canadian’s best position in the draft. After a season in the North American League, Quinn signed in February 2019 in France with FC Paris until the end of the season, then returned to the other side of the Atlantic where he now plays for OL Reign, alongside American star Megan Rapinoe. .
Since her move, her teammates have expressed their support for her. In June, his team members presented him with a rainbow number 5 shirt, representing the pride of the LGBT community. She responded on her Instagram account: “They have committed to this change and accepted discussions that are not always comfortable. I love them for that.” However, the feedback was not always positive. “Some guys have already told me openly that they don’t agree that I’m transgender. I’ve also occasionally received hurtful remarks,” she admitted according to So Foot.
‘The battle is not over yet’
But in Tokyo, he received hundreds of messages of encouragement “from young people saying they had never seen transgender people in sports before.” “Sports is the most exciting part of my life. If I can let kids play the sports they love, that’s my heritage and that’s why I’m here”, Quinn told Canadian media CBC.
In Japan, the athlete is one of only three transgender or non-binary athletes. New Zealand’s Laurel Hubbard competed in weightlifting, while American Alana Smith lined up in the ski event.
Under guidelines approved in 2003, the International Olympic Committee only allowed transgender athletes to participate in gender reassignment surgery, but dropped that requirement in 2015, focusing on low testosterone levels. But this law is moot. Some believe that transgender athletes have a physical benefit associated with these testosterone levels. The IOC understands that the new framework, which provides simple guidelines for international federations rather than strict rules, is not the last word on the matter. According to AFP, the Olympic body should publish new guidelines on the issue after the Tokyo Olympics.
In an Instagram post, Quinn anyway expressed his pride in participating in this planetary event after coming out. She was impressed to see her new identity on the roster and her adoption at the Games, while insisting that former athletes couldn’t “live their truth for the world” and that “the battle isn’t over yet”.
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