Laurel Hubbard: Transgender Olympian believes landmark appearance at Tokyo Games shouldn’t be historic | Olympic Games News
New Zealand Laurel Hubbard said she never looked for publicity and exposure, nor did she see herself as a model or trailblazer and just wanted to be seen as n ‘any other athlete; “I don’t think it should be historic,” she said of her participation in Tokyo 2020
Last updated: 08/03/21 8:09 am
Laurel Hubbard, the first openly transgender Olympian, says she would likely retire from weightlifting and believes her landmark appearance at the Tokyo Games shouldn’t be historic as the sport becomes more open and inclusive.
Hubbard of New Zealand, 43, said she never looked for publicity and exposure, did not see herself as a model or trailblazer and just wanted to be seen as no any other athlete on the sport’s biggest stage.
“I don’t think it should be historic,” Hubbard said of his participation in Tokyo, which had been one of the most controversial issues leading up to the Olympics.
“As we enter a new and more understanding world, people begin to realize that people like me are just people. We are human and as such I hope that just being here is enough.
“All I ever wanted as an athlete was to be seen as an athlete.”
Hubbard, the soft-spoken and shy voice to the media, made an unexpected premature exit on Monday, knocked out just 10 minutes from her +87kg contest after failures in her first three lifts.
She was born male and transitioned eight years ago, and was cleared to compete in women’s events by consensus of the International Olympic Committee in 2015.
But her participation in the Games fueled a huge debate over whether being more inclusive of transgender athletes competing in women’s events means putting athletes born as women at a disadvantage.
Hubbard, who was twice the age of other competitors in his weight class, said it was time to consider retiring as age had caught up with her and the physical challenge of training and the competition had become too demanding.
“What I hope is if I am able to look back it will only be a small part of the story, just a small step,” Hubbard said in an interview with international media , his first since his selection in the New Zealand team. .
“I really hope that over time any significance for this occasion will be diminished by things to come.”
When asked if she was a role model for trans people, Hubbard replied “no, not really”.
“The transgender community has more differences than they have in common because everyone is so individual, lives so different lives under such different circumstances,” she said.
“I’m not sure that a role model is anything that I can aspire to be.
“Instead, I hope that just by being here I can provide a feeling of encouragement.
“And I just hope that different people who are struggling or struggling with their lives… maybe they can see that there are opportunities in the world. There are opportunities to live authentically, and like us. are.”