By Rep. Rick West
Olan Bloomer, Peggy Clark, Jim Boles, Dick Cummings, Adele Higginbottom, Carol Khalil, Rheta Long.
Seven names tied to my heart like stones. I say them each April 19 and many times in between.
They were my coworkers at the USDA who worked with me at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City. They died the day Timothy McVeigh left a Ryder truck filled with a fertilizer bomb in front of the building and drove away. When the bomb exploded at 9:02 a.m., 168 people lost their lives. Nineteen were children. Seven were my coworkers.
I wasn’t at the building the day of the bombing. Still, it’s something I’ve never gotten over.
When I served as a state representative in 2017 and 2018, I ran a resolution on the House floor remembering those who lost their lives in this terrorist act. I am doing the same this year with House Resolution 1024. I will read the names of my friends and coworkers, and will ask my fellow House members to observe 168 seconds of silence with me. That’s only two minutes and 48 seconds – not nearly enough time to count the cost of this senseless act of terrorism or the lives it destroyed. Not nearly enough time to truly remember all the great things about those lost. Not nearly enough time to grieve. But at least it will give us pause. We must never forget.
On a separate topic, I want to again speak about Senate Bill 2, known as the Save Women’s Sports Act. This would ensure that only biological females will be allowed to play on female sports teams in Oklahoma schools, colleges, or on state-sanctioned athletic teams. Men identifying as transgender have been allowed to participate in some women’s sporting events in the nation, and it’s resulted in women getting hurt.
Science tells us males are generally bigger, faster, and stronger than females. They have larger hearts and lungs, denser bones, and stronger muscles. This allows them to jump higher, run faster and lift more weights, even after several years under the effects of testosterone suppression therapy. Similarly gifted and trained males will always have physical advantages over females—that’s the reason we have women’s sports.
Folks, it’s time we stand up for what’s right. Allowing someone that is biologically male to compete on a women’s sports team is just wrong. Women are women; men are men. I’m shocked we even have to run a bill to protect the integrity of women and women sports, but here we are.
Remember to listen to me on KPRV Radio each Thursday morning during the legislative session. And if I can help you with anything, feel free to call my Capitol office at (405) 557-7413 or email me at .
- Rick West represents District 3 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which includes part of LeFlore County.