All Posts By

Morgan Schlesselman

Members of Congress Work to Prevent DIY Abortion on College Campuses

By | News and Events, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

On July 21, Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) introduced the “Protecting Life on College Campus Act of 2021” with Rep. Mary Miller (R-Illinois) as the House co-lead; Sen. Steve Daines (R-Montana) introduced the legislation in the Senate.

The Protecting Life on College Campus Act (H.R. 4607) would prohibit federal funds from going to any institution of higher education that has a student-based service site that provides abortions or abortion drugs to students of that institution. This legislation is in response to California’s chemical abortion pill mandate on college campuses that will take effect in 2023.

In a press conference introducing the bill, Rep. Roy said, “A college dorm room is no place to have a do-it-yourself abortion, and the American taxpayer should not be paying for the destruction of innocent human life on our college campuses. But, as we already know, what the abortion industry really cares about are profits—not the welfare of mothers or the integrity of higher learning.”

Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC) is proud to support this bill that stands for life in the womb and on college campuses. Our Young Women for America leaders across the country are grateful for federal action on this issue. Abortion services have no place on college campuses.

In a letter endorsing the legislation, CEO and President Penny Nance said, “Having the chemical abortion pill readily available on college campuses is detrimental to the safety, health, and well-being of students. As Concerned Women for America has Young Women for America chapters on college campuses across the country, this issue is critically important to us and our college leaders. Out of care and compassion for the young women on college campuses, we applaud you for introducing the Protecting Life on College Campus Act of 2021.”

More about the introduction of this bill can be found here. CWALAC’s letter of support for this pro-life bill can be read here.

Meet CWA Intern Morgan Schlesselman

By | News and Events | No Comments

Hi there! My name is Morgan Schlesselman. I was born and raised in a small town in the Central Valley of California. In May 2020, I graduated from Fresno Pacific University with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice. I am currently two-thirds of the way through Liberty University’s Master of Arts in Public Policy program. The Lord has been so gracious to provide me with the opportunity to be Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) Government Relations intern this summer.

Having attended Christian schools since junior high, I have had the opportunity to form a Biblical worldview and learn how that ought to be applied to anything and everything a person does. Recently, through my education at Liberty University, I have gained valuable wisdom on how to apply Biblical principles to government affairs and political issues. When I learned more about the mission and work of CWA, I felt at home. CWA has found a beautiful way of “protecting and promoting Biblical values and Constitutional principles through prayer, education, and advocacy,” and it has been an honor to take part in that in the short time I have been here this summer. Being able to combine my faith with my passion for public policy has been such a blessing.

Throughout the application process and time leading up to the beginning of this internship, it was so clear that the Lord had opened this door for me. Because of that, I had been so expectant and excited for what He had in store. While this internship is only halfway through now, it has already exceeded my expectations. It has been a joy to witness driven, passionate, and intelligent Christ-followers serve the Lord and this country through the work they are doing here. My eyes have been opened to how many opportunities are out there in the political and public policy arenas to effect positive change for Christ.

Since starting this internship, I have done a significant amount of research on the transgender movement. At times it can be difficult to engage with such heavy topics, but it is a good reminder of how important it is to cling to the word of God. As Christ-followers, we are called to promote God’s truth, no matter the cost. As 2 Timothy 2:15 says, “do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.”

Upon completion of this internship, I will return home to finish my schooling. I am confident that the Lord will continue to open doors and lead me to what He has for me. Regardless of what that is, I know that I will take valuable experience and wisdom from the work I have done here at CWA and from the people from whom I have learned.

A Nightmare Scenario for Women’s Olympic Dreams

By | Erasing Women, News and Events, Sexual Exploitation, Women's Sports | No Comments

By Morgan Schlesselman, CWA Government Relations Intern

For the first time, a transgender athlete will compete in the Olympics. Laurel Hubbard, a biological male from New Zealand, will compete in women’s weightlifting at the age of 43 after undergoing a gender transition at the age of 35. Hubbard meets the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Weightlifting Federation’s requirements, which allow any male-bodied transgender athlete to compete as a woman so long as the athlete’s testosterone level is below 10 nanomoles per liter. However, elite female athletes have a testosterone range of 0.12 to 1.79 nanomoles per liter, which means that Hubbard could have five times or more the amount of testosterone compared to the rest of the competition.

The news of Hubbard’s qualification for the Olympic team has stirred up responses from members of the weightlifting community. Belgian super-heavyweight weightlifter Anna Vanbellinghen, who offered her support for the transgender community, made it clear that “this particular situation is unfair to the sport and to the athletes. So why is it still a question whether two decades, from puberty to the age of 35, with the hormonal system of a man also would give an advantage [in competing against women]?”

Similarly, former New Zealand weightlifter Tracey Lambrechs said, “When I was told to drop the category because Laurel was obviously going to be their number one super, it was heartbreaking, like super soul-destroying. And it’s unfortunate that some female, somewhere is like, ‘Well, I’m going to miss out on going to the Olympics, on achieving my dream, representing my country because a transgendered athlete is able to compete.’”

In addition to weightlifters voicing their concerns over Hubbard’s spot on the Olympic team, organizations that support women’s rights have made statements, too. Save Women’s Sport Australasia said, “It is flawed policy from the IOC that has allowed the selection of a 43-year-old biological male who identifies as a woman to compete in the female category. Males do have a performance advantage that is based on their biological sex. They outperform us on every single metric – speed, stamina, strength. Picking testosterone is a red herring … We are forgetting about the anatomy, the faster twitch muscle, the bigger organs.”

Vice President of Government Relations for Concerned Women for America, Doreen Denny, warned of the ramifications of this decision, “For the purpose and future of women’s sports, this is devastating news. It creates a mockery of women’s sports.” More of Denny’s comments can be found here.

As Tracey Lambrechs mentioned earlier, this policy impacts the dreams of girls all over the world. Women and girls deserve the opportunity to have a fair playing field and equal competition; competing against a 43-year-old biological male in women’s sports is not that.

As for the United States, Chelsea Wolfe became the first trans athlete to be on a U.S. Olympic roster by making it as an alternate on the BMX freestyle team. However, a World Athletics policy did prevent a biological male from taking an opportunity away from a biological female in the women’s 400-meter hurdles at the U.S. Olympic trials. Cece Telfer, who in May 2019 became the first biological male to win a national NCAA track and field title in the women’s 400-meter hurdles, after competing  on the men’s team just sixteen months prior, was ruled ineligible for the U.S. Olympic trials. U.S.A. Track and Field determined that Telfer’s testosterone levels did not meet the requirement to compete. While this decision avoided the controversy, Telfer should not have been in the running in the first place.

As a result of Hubbard’s participation, women’s super-heavyweight weightlifting may be among the most watched events at the Olympic Games in Tokyo this summer. Unfortunately, not for the right reasons. As Save Women’s Sport Australasia said previously, biological males have specific anatomy that give them an advantage in speed, stamina, and strength that cannot be evaluated or mitigated by testosterone levels alone. In order to protect the integrity and future of women’s sports, the main criterion should be quite simple: on the basis of biological sex.

No Celebration: Nearly 50 Years of Title IX Equality for Women at Risk

By | Legislative Updates, News and Events, Sexual Exploitation, Women's Sports | No Comments

By Morgan Schlesselman, CWA Government Relations Intern

June 23, 2021, marks the 49th anniversary of the passage of Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, which states that “no person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

Title IX was spearheaded by former Congresswoman Patsy Mink (D-Hawaii) and Sen. Birch Bayh (D-Indiana), who believed that women were entitled to equal opportunities in education and athletics. As Birch Bayh put it, “It’s unfortunate. Title IX is rather simple: don’t discriminate on the basis of sex.”

Lin Dunn, a women’s professional and college basketball coach for more than 40 years, said, “I honestly believe that the package of Title IX, that piece of legislation, is one of the most powerful pieces to empower and impact women ever.” Dunn is correct; before Title IX was enacted, women received fewer than 10 percent of all medical and law degrees, and only one in 27 high school girls played sports. Now, one in two high school girls play sports, and women possess more than half of the bachelor’s and graduate degrees in this country. According to the Women’s Sport’s Foundation, female participation in sports leads to better grades, higher graduation rates, fewer unplanned pregnancies, higher levels of confidence and self-esteem, lower levels of depression, and more positive body image than females who do not play sports.

However, the Biden Administration is actively working to overturn the equal rights women and girls gained under Title IX.  Today, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights sent a Letter to Educators on the 49thAnniversary of Title IX  explaining that “sex-based discrimination” includes gender identity and sexual orientation. This change in definition to include gender identity puts all the progress of the last 49 years at risk. Allowing biological males to compete in sports for women and girls means less space for female athletes on teams, the loss of scholarships, and the loss of awards and other opportunities.

It has been well established that the male body is naturally bigger, stronger, and faster than the female body. The physical advantage men have is what led to the creation of separate categories for women’s sports to provide a fair playing field and equal opportunities for female athletes. It has not taken long to see the impact of allowing biological males into female sports. In just three seasons, the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference’s policy that allows any male self-identifying as a girl to compete in girls’ sports led to two transgender runners taking 15 women’s state championship titles and more than 85 opportunities for higher level competitions from female track athletes.

Biological males are not just taking opportunities and championships from females at the high school level, but college as well. In May 2019, a transathlete from Franklin Pierce University became the first biological male to win an NCAA track and field title in the women’s  400-meter hurdles. Just sixteen months prior, the same athlete had competed on Franklin Pierce’s men’s team. With the re-definition of sex under Title IX and a decade-old NCAA policy that embraces the inclusion of transgender athletes in women’s sports, female athletes will face a new barrier to equal opportunity in their sport.

Seeing the potential impact of these policies on female athletes, many states are working to pass legislation requiring participation in sports based on biological sex. This year, governors in seven states signed bills into law. However, these states now face the threat of being stripped of the opportunity to host NCAA championships. The NCAA has pledged “only locations where hosts can commit to providing an environment that is safe, healthy and free of discrimination should be selected. We will continue to closely monitor these situations to determine whether NCAA championships can be conducted in ways that are welcoming and respectful of all participants.” In the eyes of the NCAA, granting females fairness and equal opportunity to compete only against biological females is “discrimination.”

While many state legislatures and governors have taken initiative to protect fairness in women’s sports, the Biden Administration’s Department of Justice (DOJ) is making their priorities to do the opposite very clear. In a statement of interest in B.P.J. v. West Virginia State Board of Education, the DOJ argues that any law that bans transgender girls from competing in female sports is unconstitutional because it violates Title IX and the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

Title IX was once a huge victory for women’s rights, equality, and female empowerment. Today, with the push to redefine what it means to be a woman, female athletes are facing a new fight for equality. Is this what Congresswoman Mink and Senator Bayh had in mind?