There was an impassioned debate in the South Dakota State Senate this week over a proposed bill that would restrict transgender female students from participating in female sports.

Legislators supporting the bill framed their arguments around fairness.

"HB 1217 makes sure women's sports in South Dakota stays fair by prohibiting biological males, no matter how they identify, from competing in female sports," said Republican state Sen. Maggie Sutton.

A Democratic opponent of the bill responded by talking about Christian values of love and inclusion.​

"Jesus says, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost,' so meaning that there is no rejoicing until all have found a place in the flock, including our trans siblings of faith," said Democratic state Sen. Reynold Nesiba, reading from a letter from a Lutheran bishop.

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