Tennis champion Margaret Court is eliciting screams of indignation from celebrity and media figures after serving up some far-too-rational comments against the teaching of transgenderism in schools, reports the New York Daily News.
Court, now a Pentecostal pastor in a church in Western Australia, slammed people who undergo gender transition. The comments were made during a church sermon just before New Year’s.
In a video posted on the Victory Life Centre Facebook page, the 77-year-old states: “LGBT and the schools — it’s of the devil, it’s not of God.”
“Children are making the decision at 7 or 8 years of age to change their sex. No, just read the first two chapters of Genesis, that’s all I say. Male and female,” she tells the church.
“It’s so wrong at that age because a lot of things are planted in this thought realm at that age, and they start to question ‘what am I’?” she said.
She stressed the point that transgender children are confused and that adults are harming them by encouraging transitioning. “You have got young people taking hormones and having changes, by the time they are 17 they are thinking, ‘Now I’m a boy and really I was a girl.’”
Court’s comments and subsequent media shaming come just weeks before the 50th anniversary of her Grand Slam sweep at the Australian Open. Court won all four majors in 1970. Throughout her career, she scored 24 Grand Slam victories.
Fellow tennis star Martina Navratilova, an openly lesbian athlete and LGBT activist, called Court’s remarks “outrageous and so wrong,” and seemed to have a problem with her colleague’s continued star status.
“We don’t need to change or rewrite history when it comes to anyone’s accomplishments but we do not need to celebrate them,” Navratilova tweeted. “Margaret Court is hiding behind her Bible as many have done before her and will do after her. Let’s not keep elevating it.”
In November, Tennis Australia invited Court to celebrate her important date, but stated that it did not agree with her “demeaning” personal views, CNN reported at the time.