WHITEFISH, MT — On Monday, hundreds of supporters joined current and former athletes, coaches, and leading women’s advocates, including Riley Gaines and former U.S. Representative Tulsi Gabbard, for the multistate Our Bodies, Our Sports “Take Back Title IX” Summer 2024 Bus Tour in Whitefish, Montana. The rally-style event, held at Montana Longhorn Co., is part of the landmark tour hitting the road coast-to-coast throughout the month of June, building widespread support to protect women’s sports ahead of the Biden administration’s Title IX rewrite taking effect on August 1.

Women’s and girls’ equal athletic opportunity, privacy, and safety will take a devastating blow under the new Title IX rules, which replaces “sex” with “gender identity”. The regulations strip away protections for women—taking opportunities from women and giving them to men. This doesn’t enforce Title IX, it violates it. That was true before the Biden administration dropped this rule, and it is still true today.

The bus tour is hosted by the Our Bodies, Our Sports coalition, the nation’s first and only coalition of women’s advocacy organizations from across the political spectrum fighting to protect women’s sports.


Speakers at the event shared personal stories of impact and harm due to misguided policies that allow males in women’s spaces, and the need for policymakers to restore equal athletic opportunity and fairness to women’s sports. Here is what they had to say:

Riley Gaines, Independent Women’s Forum ambassador, 12x All-American swimmer, and host of “Gaines for Girls” on OutKick: “We have a president in the White House right now who rewrote Title IX entirely, and took [the original] 37 words to create a new proposal that’s almost half a million words. That should tell you everything you need to know. In a nutshell, equating ‘sex’ with ‘gender identity’ [and] says they’re synonymous. Men can take academic and athletic scholarships [meant for women], men would have full access to bathrooms, locker rooms, changing spaces—not just on college campuses. This is any educational program that receives federal funding.”

LTG Tulsi Gabbard, former U.S. Representative (HI-2) and original sponsor of the Protect Women’s Sports Act: “It’s great to be here with all of you, standing with some incredible women who have come together from all across the country to stand for each other and for the next generation of girls and women’s fairness and equality in sports and education. We have to stand with our women and girls. This bipartisan coalition that’s come together is unprecedented in many ways, and we welcome people all across the country to come and join us in this most important cause, not only to stand with women and girls but to stand for objective truth.”

Paula Scanlan, Independent Women’s Forum ambassador and former University of Pennsylvania swimmer and former teammate of Lia Thomas: “Everywhere that sex-based protections previously existed will not exist if this stands. We have to look at these young girls and these young boys and protect this country for them and make this world a place that we are comfortable living in. We’re taking back Title IX, and we’re doing it for the next generation of women.”

Coach Kim Russell, Independent Women’s Forum ambassador and former Head Women’s Lacrosse Coach at Oberlin College: “Title IX was passed when I was five years old. It gave me the opportunity to get a college scholarship to play two Division I sports. I was able to play both field hockey and lacrosse at the DI level at William and Mary. Those sports enabled me to get an internship at Wimbledon while I was in college. That internship enabled me to get a job in professional sports. All of that was due to 37 words that were written and put into our legislature in 1972. The Biden administration has put in 1,577 pages to try to take those words away from us.”

Selina Soule, 4x track and field National Qualifier, forced out of regional championships due to males taking women’s spots: “I warned everybody back in 2018 that if we do not put an end to this issue, it will only continue to appear in more and more sports across the country, and that we will eventually see the end of women’s sports. We now have a president who is, in essence, undoing the protections that Title IX provided for women, [and] if we allow these changes to occur, women will be turned into second-class citizens. We must ensure women across this country are protected and have the right to win in their own sports. Sports are about biology, not identity, and we need to keep the women’s category for women only.”

Adriana McLamb, spokeswoman for Independent Women’s Forum, former DI volleyball player, and coach and recruiter to aspiring collegiate female volleyball players: “Taking away opportunities from women and giving them to men doesn’t enforce Title IX, it truly violates it. This movement is pro-woman, pro-girls, pro-fairness, pro-equality, pro-sport, and pro-women’s rights.”

Coach Barbara Ehardt, former 15-year career NCAA Division I women’s basketball coach and current member of the Idaho House of Representatives from the 33rd district: “In 1972, the federal government passed Title IX, [and] I had no idea Title IX would change my life. When it comes to sports, it’s about winning. If it wasn’t about winning, players wouldn’t get cut, and coaches wouldn’t get fired. If you allow just one biological male to come on a [women’s] team, eventually, you’ll have to allow all males who try out to be on the team. Stay strong, courage begets courage. Take Title IX back.”

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Click HERE to see upcoming stops on the bus tour.

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