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Controversy Surrounds Rip Curl’s Handling of Brand Ambassador and Transgender Athlete Debate

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Controversy Surrounds Rip Curl's Handling Of Brand Ambassador And Transgender Athlete Debate

Controversy has erupted within the surf community over Rip Curl‘s recent decisions regarding their brand ambassador and the inclusion of transgender athletes in women’s competitions. The popular wetsuit brand faced backlash after parting ways with professional surfer Bethany Hamilton, allegedly due to her opposition to transgender women competing in women’s events.

The surf community quickly responded with calls to boycott Rip Curl, questioning the company’s decision to drop Bethany Hamilton while simultaneously appointing a male surfer as a women’s ambassador. The move was seen by many as a contradiction and sparked outrage worldwide.

Sasha Jane Lowerson, a well-known middle-aged female surfer, joined the criticism of Rip Curl, condemning the brand’s decision and referring to the male surfer as a “mentally ill man making a mockery of actual women”. Despite the controversy, Rip Curl stood by their appointment, describing the male surfer as a “waterwoman” and emphasizing their commitment to inclusivity.

In the midst of the trans debate and calls to boycott Rip Curl, journalist Chas Smith urged surfers to shift their focus to the forgotten victims of the once-renowned wetsuit company. Smith argued for solidarity with those oppressed rather than getting caught up in the divisive transgender athlete debate.

Rachel Adams

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