"What Bethany does even today is incredible, riding waves with just one hand!"
It has been nearly three months since the World Surf League declared war on the inspirational one-armed surfer Bethany Hamilton. The shocking row began after the Santa Monica-based “home of professional surfing” adopted liberal new rules allowing transgender surfers with low testosterone, revealed through self-testing, to compete against women. While many cheered the progressive stance others were not so happy. Surf great Kelly Slater called for the creation of a trans division while Kauai’s Hamilton discussed issues of fairness.
Retribution was swift.
Surfers were not allowed to choose “Hamilton” for their jerseys celebrating International Women’s Day and commentators were not allowed to mention her name.
A brutal erasure.
Well, the World Surf League’s forecasting partner Surfline has decided to break ranks with WSL chiefs Erik Logan, Jessi Miley-Dyer etc. and spoke glowingly about the thirty-three-year-old mother of three during yesterday’s live broadcast of the XL Teahupo’o swell. Her unique ability to paddle, spin and pop up all with only one arm, her tenacity, highlighted.
There is no word, as of yet, how the World Surf League will respond to such provocation. Will Surfline be scrubbed entirely? Told to apologize and beg for forgiveness?
Sent to the gulag (Challenger Series)?
Currently more questions than answers.