A single spike in a western N.C. high school girls’ volleyball game has grabbed the attention of people around the world and reignited the debate over whether males belong in girls’ sports. In the September game — between Hiawassee Dam High in Cherokee County and Highlands High in Macon County — a male Highlands player who identifies as a girl delivered a brutal spike directly into the face of a female Hiawasee Dam player.

The blow to the Hiawasee Dam player’s head was so forceful that she experienced severe head and neck injuries and may have permanent vision problems. FOX News reports the trans student is apparently using video of the spike in a highlight reel for college recruiters.

This did not need to happen. And the incident is further evidence that it’s dangerous to play along with the incoherent modern dogma that gender is a subjective mental state rather than a biological reality experienced by every mammalian species and most other life forms.

Thankfully, this unnamed girl’s community acted quickly to push back and prevent a repeat of this incident. The Cherokee County Board of Education voted 5-1 to forfeit the rest of the games against Highlands High volleyball due to “safety concerns,” not only for Hiawasee Dam but also for the Murphy High and Andrews High teams.

The same common sense was not seen at Highlands High though. Maybe they were too caught up in the excitement of their vollyeball team’s amazing season to ask questions about safety and fairness — as their team went undefeated in conference play, won 3-0 in both of their conference tournament games, and won their first playoff game. They were finally stopped in the second round of the 1A state playoffs by South Stokes High. One wonders how many other 70 mph spikes were involved in these wins.

Over the past few years, we have been holding a society-wide experiment on the hypothesis that male and female bodies are interchangeable, and the very predictable results are in. This incident should be the final evidence necessary, after the many other embarrassing examples, like in Connecticut track-and-field and Penn State swimming. It’s time for the radical gender ideologues to admit defeat and let us all get back to normal.

USA Today photo of Gabrielle Ludwig, a male military veteran who joined a college women’s basketball team after transitioning.

The issue is not just one of women feeling uncomfortable around males in the locker room, which they very often do, or of losing scholarships and awards, which they also do, but of safety, as this Hiawasee Dam case showed in a generally safe non-contact sport.

If this needs to be made clearer, consider the MMA fight between aging, novice trans athlete Fallon Fox and Tamikka Brents, a biological female fighter. In the fight, Brents had her orbital socket crushed and needed extensive medical treatment afterwards, causing an outcry to have Fox banned from fighting women again.

“I’ve fought a lot of women and have never felt the strength that I felt in a fight as I did today,” Brents said afterwards. “I can’t answer whether it’s because she was born a man or not because I’m not a doctor. What I can is that I’ve never felt so overpowered ever in my life, and I am an abnormally strong female. I still disagree with Fox fighting. She can pursue any career but when it comes to a combat sport I think it just isn’t fair.”

What should make the sexual imbalance in sports even more obvious is the lack of new female football and basketball players dominating the male teams, despite the prevalence of girls identifying as boys rising from 0.002% to 2% of teens almost over night. It is also made obvious by women’s Olympic world records (like Florence Joyner’s 100m record of 10.49 seconds) being smashed by multiple high school boys every year.

Progressives like to look to Europe to see what direction America should head, and this would be a good time for them to look across the Atlantic for guidance. Sweden and Finland have banned transgender hormone therapy and surgeries for those under 18, and Britain’s National Health Service just announced they are following suit.

Their reasoning? The NHS says their evidence shows that transgenderism in children is a “transient phase,” and “in most cases gender incongruence does not persist into adolescence.” Rather than treating students with gender dysphoria as permanent members of the opposite sex, we should realize that this is most likely a feeling that will pass. Interestingly, that’s what our own data showed (that 60-90% of trans-identifying youth desist during puberty) until we collectively decided to ignore those statistics.

We should try to be understanding and compassionate on the difficult issues surrounding gender confusion in teens. But that doesn’t mean throwing out all common sense and caution, based on nearly unanimous wisdom and human experience on gender up to this point, in favor of theories created in the last few years.

State officials should take similar steps to those taken by the brave members of the Cherokee County school board. Enough is enough.