The Last Word: March 17, 2017

Transgender athletes deserve right to choose

By Ashley Steeb

It’s been a never-ending debate: Who can compete in which sports? Should girls be allowed to play on the boys’ football team? Should boys be allowed to play on a girls’ sports team? When it comes down to transgender athletes and their participation in sports, what team should they compete on?

Unfortunately, the answer is not clear in today’s society. I will not pretend to have the answer because I don’t. 

The topic is a highly debated talking point not only in sports, but in several areas of life. It can even be considered as controversial.

Cisgender athletes, or a person whose gender corresponds with their birth gender, say it does not matter whether the athlete completed their transformation because they still have the bone structure of the gender they were born with, according to an article from The Washington Post.

In a study published by the Journal of Sporting Cultures and Identities, an athlete who transitioned from male to female and underwent a year of hormone therapy actually has less muscle mass, bone density and other features. Cisgender females also have higher levels of testosterone than transgender women. 

Recently, a Texas high school wrestler who recently made the transition from female to male won a state girls’ wrestling title, despite his testosterone treatment, transition to male and desire to compete against fellow male wrestlers.

The high school student has the muscle mass of a teenaged male, but Texas policy requires athletes to compete as the gender stated on their birth certificate, according to a Fort Worth Star-Telegram article.

The National Collegiate A’s guidelines, released in 2011, for transgender athletes states a female-to-male student may compete on the men’s team and forgo competing on the women’s team. A male-to-female student cannot compete on a women’s team until they complete one year of testosterone suppression treatment. In the meantime, they may compete on the men’s team until the one-year treatment is complete.

Many critics of the Texas teen’s case say the state needs to adopt something similar to the NCAA’s policy. If they did so, the teen would be allowed to compete on the men’s wrestling team.

Long story short, athletes who have made the complete transition to the opposite gender should compete in the gender division they currently identify with. Until they permit co-ed sports across the athletic spectrum, adopting similar rules to the NCAA’s transgender policy is the only way to maintain fair competition.

Original movies are the best way to go

By Christina Ramey

Everywhere I look, classic movies are being remade. Are screenwriters running out of ideas? Do they sit around and watch movies, asking themselves whether they could make it better?

Let’s be honest — remakes will never be as good as the original.

When watching a film remake, I never get the initial rush I get when I watch a movie for the first time. There isn’t as much anticipation. I find myself comparing the movie with the original.

I already know what is going to happen and how it will end. 

These films usually have different actors portraying the classic characters. This means these actors have different acting styles and mannerisms. It can be frustrating when you expect a character to be portrayed one way, but they act completely different.

But this isn’t to say all remakes are terrible. I really enjoy watching the 2013 rendition of “The Great Gatsby” with actor Leonardo DiCaprio. Actually, I prefer this over the original 1974 film.

“The Great Gatsby” is just one of a few remakes that are potentially better than the original. For example, I prefer watching the original “Friday the 13th” from 1980 over the 2009 version. Despite my love for actor Jared Padalecki, who plays in the most recent version, I will always prefer to watch the original film.

I’ll continue to watch remakes, but I can’t promise I’ll enjoy them as much as I enjoy the originals.

Movie review: I’ll never stop ‘Singin’ in the Rain’

By Ashley Steeb

My all-time favorite movie to ever be made is “Singin’ in the Rain.”

I love the movie so much that I can quote a majority of the movie lines from memory. I even went to a special showing of the movie in January.

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer released the musical comedy movie in 1952 and has an all-star cast with Donald O’Connor, Debbie Reynolds and Gene Kelly.

While the movie did not win many awards back in the day, it is considered the fifth best American-made movie of all time.

I will admit that I initially could not stand the movie. At the time, I was too young and stupid to appreciate all of the movie’s little quirky nuances. I also did not appreciate the movie’s genre.

“Singin’ in the Rain” follows the lovable Gene Kelly’s character, a silent movie star having a difficult time transitioning to the world of talking movies. 

Lina Lamont, played by Jean Hagen, happens to be my favorite character in not only the movie, but also in any movie ever created.

She plays a high-pitched, blonde, stupid female who is rude and desires to be the center of attention. Lina Lamont is the main love interest in all the movies created by Kelly’s character, Don Lockwood.

She is threatened by Debbie Reynolds’ character, Kathy Selden, because Don Lockwood falls in love with her instead. She is also much better at acting and singing.

Lamont was not made to be a likeable character, but she steals the show anyways. She has all of the best lines, and she’s hilarious.

Yes, this movie may seem ancient. But sometimes the best movies are the classic films that made Hollywood what it is today.

I give this movie a 12 out of 10 stars. Why? Because it deserves it. Whether you enjoy musicals or not, I suggest you give it a try because you may just be surprised.

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The Franklin is the student newspaper at Franklin College in Franklin, Indiana. We publish in-depth campus news weekly.

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