Michael Bisping believes transgender MMA fighters should not be allowed to compete in traditional women’s MMA divisions.
Transgender MMA newcomer Alana McLaughlin began her career with a second-round submission victory over Celine Provost at Combate Global: Perez vs. Roa last Friday. And as was the case with Fallon Fox before her, McLaughlin’s arrival into MMA has sparked a wave of debates about whether or not transgender women should be allowed to compete against fighters who were born biologically female.
In the latest installment of the Believe You Me podcast, UFC legend Michael Bisping voiced support for the transgender community in general and is even all for them competing against cisgender females in other sports. But when it comes to a sport as violent and physical as MMA, “The Count” is throwing down a red flag (h/t LowKickMMA).
“I’m not here to talk about transgender rights, you can identify as whatever you want,” Bisping said. “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. 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 is well aware of the backlash surrounding her MMA debut, prompting her to issue what she claims to be a one-time statement to all her detractors, which she posted on Instagram. UFC middleweight Sean Strickland also spoke out against McLaughlin competing in women’s MMA, with much more colorful and profane rhetoric than Bisping chose to adopt in his remarks.
Combate Global has yet to comment publicly on this issue.
Do you agree with Michael Bisping? Should transgender females not be allowed to compete in women’s MMA division?