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Canadian footballer Quinn makes history as the first transgender to win an Olympic gold medal

The Canadian etched their name in the history books after countless battles on and off the field.

Canadian midfielder Quinn (Sources: CNN)
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Canadian midfielder Quinn makes history after being the first transgender footballer to win an Olympic medal (Sources: CNN)

By

Ananth Narasimman

Updated: 6 Aug 2021 6:29 PM GMT

Canadian midfielder Quinn is set to etch their name in the history books as they become the first openly transgender athlete to win a gold medal in what is a watershed moment for the Olympics.

The non-binary athlete has been a professional footballer since 2018, plying their trade in countries such as Sweden, The United States and France. The 25-year-old OL Reign's star has also been a constant fixture in the national team since their debut in 2014. They were a key part of Canada's gold medal run in the Tokyo Olympics.
Quinn announced that they were transgender in 2020, admitting that it was a difficult moment to muster the courage to publically make the announcement.
Allowing openly transgender athletes to compete is a significant step in the right direction for the Olympics and sports as a whole as they send out a message of inclusivity. The IOC changed their rules to accommodate transgenders in 2016 but the first transgender athlete in Quinn and New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard participated in 2020. Quinn and Laurel Hubbard have broken down the barriers that stopped transgender athletes from participating in the Olympics in the past.
"I don't think there's ever a right moment to do something like this. I understood that there was going to be backlash. It's taken me a while, having a trans identity, to be able to deal with the amount of backlash that I receive in my daily life. I hope they can see that there are people in the world who want to make sports a more inclusive place for them and that I'm one of those people. Hopefully, in five years, sports will be a more inclusive space. I think the first step is making sure that everyone has access to being able to play sports and that you're not kicked out or excluded from the sporting realm at such a young age just because of how you identify," they said in an interview to OL Reign, reports ABC.
"Part of the reason I'm coming out is that I want my identity to be respected in media surrounding football. Part of it was I wanted to start a conversation. I do feel a bit of pressure do that. That said, I'm one voice in the trans community, which has such a diverse range of experiences. I carry a lot of privilege in that too, being able to play my sport and how I present myself in society. I am considered maybe one of the most digestible versions of what it means to be trans. I'm white, I'm trans-masculine. I want my story to be told because when we have lots of trans visibility that's where we start making a movement and start making gains in society. At the same time, I think there's such a responsibility for me to uplift the voices of other marginalized trans folks to diversify the number of trans stories that the general audience is hearing," they added during the interview.


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