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Stella Walsh was an Olympian in the 1930s. She was also intersex.

Female athletes can have more than physical hurdles to jump over when competing in the Olympics.

Stella Walsh was an Olympian in the 1930s. She was also intersex.

Stella Walsh was one of the greatest female athletes in history, even though the world tried to strip her of her medals ... and her gender.

Photo via audiovis.nac.gov.pl.


"The Queen of Sprint," as Walsh was more commonly known, was an unequivocal champion of the 100-meter dash. She also happened to be intersex — a reality she kept secret in life because she feared what it might do to her career.

Unfortunately, her fear proved well-founded when her secret was discovered after her death, and people began questioning her natural abilities and record as a result.

Despite a rough childhood, Walsh sprinted ahead into an incredibly successful athletic career.

She was born Stanislawa Walasiewiczowna in Poland in 1911, but moved with her family to Cleveland, Ohio, later that year (although she wouldn't officially become an American citizen until 1947).

In high school, she was a superstar athlete, but her athletic prowess didn't stop her from being the target of bullies, who gave her the nickname "Bull Montana" after the wrestler/actor Lewis Montagna.

Photo via audiovis.nac.gov.pl.

Walsh went on to win numerous medals in both Poland and the United States for running and long jump and, in 1930, broke the world record for the 50-yard dash, which she completed in six seconds, at the Millrose Games.

Walsh competed in the Olympics for the first time at the age of 21 and for the last time in 1936 at the age of 25.

In 1932, she ran as a member of the Polish team, where she performed exceptionally, setting the world record for the 100-meter dash at 11.9 seconds, and she returned to Poland a gold medal champion.

Walsh continued to win medals and break records through 1935, but when she returned to defend her title at the Olympics in Berlin in 1936, she was bested by a worthy adversary — 18-year-old American Helen Stephens.

Walsh shaking hands with Stephens. Photo via audiovis.nac.gov.pl.

Soon after their race, a rumor was leaked to the press that Stephens was actually a man, and Stephens was forced to undergo the first-ever gender inspection by the International Olympics Committee (IOC).

Stephens was confirmed to be female, but the controversy opened up new questions for the IOC, questions that would end up coming back around to hurt Stella Walsh, even after she was killed in 1980 at the age of 69.

Walsh's autopsy revealed something surprising — she had male genitalia.

It's called mosaicism — a cellular mutation that resulted in her having mostly male (XY) chromosomes and therefore making her intersex.

Photo via audiovis.nac.gov.pl.

Walsh's parents chose to raise her as a girl, mostly because back in the 1920s and '30s, terms like "intersex" and "transgender" were barely acknowledged, much less socially accepted.

When the results of Walsh's autopsy were leaked, the press went on a rampage. A new tasteless nickname, "Stella the Fella," began circulating, and articles popped up with titles like "Heroine or Hero?" all because a simple truth had finally been revealed.

Then, Walsh's critics went after her medals, arguing that the IOC should take them back, because, being intersex, Walsh had essentially cheated and hadn't truly earned them.

Ultimately, the IOC opted not to revoke her medals, but on a technicality: She had competed before the organization implemented routine gender verification tests.

The fact that Walsh was under scrutiny 45 years after she competed begs the question: Who determines this gender line and why?

Much like gender itself, it's a complex issue.

Unisex bathroom sign. Sara D. Davis/Getty Images.

Thankfully, the IOC recognized this complexity back in 1996, when it decided to discontinue the gender identification process via chromosomal testing. Now, the IOC examines intersex athletes on a case-by-case basis, and it even began allowing transgender athletes to compete back in 2004, though again, the process there is still discriminatory.

While all these tests were put in place to promote fairness, the qualifiers the IOC uses to define a person's gender are by no means perfect.

Yes, higher testosterone levels can cause "female hyperandrogenism" which may cause a woman to have more stereotypically masculine traits like increased muscle mass. But that isn't always the case.

And even if the IOC did go so far as to impose invasive chromosomal testing on female athletes, the results of those tests could be just as ambiguous, especially because we now know many women are born with a Y chromosome and don't even know it.

Olympian Caster Semenya tested positive for "Y" chromosome. That doesn't mean she's not a woman. Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images.

Weirdly, the IOC doesn't have as many regulations and tests for trans male athletes because trans male athletes aren't perceived as having any sort of physical advantage over their competition.

This is both commendable, in that it shows the IOC's primary focus is on ensuring fair competition, but also disappointing because it reinforces the notion that people assigned male at birth are inherently stronger than those assigned female at birth.

Hopefully, now that more transgender and intersex athletes are coming out to compete in the Olympics, the qualifying system will catch up to them.

It will take time, but there has definitely been progress since Walsh's time, especially in the last 15 years. For example, in just the 2016 Olympics alone, the United States has seven LGBTQ athletes competing.

Megan Rapinoe, US Soccer. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images.

There may always be a separation between gender at the Olympics, but the spectrum of those genders is widening significantly.

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2020 was difficult (to say the least). The year was full of life changes, losses, and lessons as we learned to navigate the "new normal." You may have questions about what the changes and challenges of 2020 mean for your taxes. That's where TurboTax Live comes in, making it easy to connect with real tax experts to help with your taxes – or even do them for you, start to finish.

Not only has TurboTax Live helped millions of people get their taxes done right, but this year they've also celebrated people who uplifted their communities during a difficult time by surprising them with "little lifts" to help out even more.

Here are a few of their stories:


Julz, hairdresser and salon owner

"As a hairdresser and salon owner, 2020 was extremely challenging," says Julz. "Being a hairdresser has historically been a recession-proof industry, but we've never faced global shut down due to health risk, or pandemic, not in my lifetime. And for the first time, hairdressers didn't have job security."

Julz had to shut down her salon and go on unemployment benefits for the first time. She also had to figure out how she was going to support herself, her staff and her business during this difficult time. But many other beauty industry professionals didn't have access to the resources they needed, so Julz decided to help.

"My business partner and I began teaching basic financial literacy to other beauty industry professionals," she says. "Transitioning our business from behind the chair to an online academy was a challenge we tackled head-on so that we could move hairdressers into this new space of education, and create a more accessible curriculum to better serve our industry.

Julz connected with a TurboTax Live expert who helped her understand how unemployment affected her taxes and gave her guidance on filing quarterly estimated taxes for her small business. "I was terrified to sit at a computer and tackle this mess of receipts," Julz says, so "it was great to have some virtual handholding to walk me through each question."

In addition to giving Julz the personalized tax advice she needed, TurboTax Live surprised her with a "little lift" that empowered her to help even more beauty professionals. "When my tax expert Diana surprised me with a little lift, I was moved to tears," says Julz. "With that little lift, I was able to establish a scholarship fund to help get other hairdressers the education they deserve."


Alana, new mom

Alana welcomed her first child in 2020. "I think my biggest challenge was figuring out how to be a mom, with no guidance," she says. "My original plan was to have my mom by my side, teaching me the ropes, but because of COVID, she wasn't able to come out here."

She was also without a job for most of 2020 and struggled to find something new.

So, Alana took it as a sign: she decided to launch her own business so she could support her new baby, and that's exactly what she did. She started a feel-good company that specializes in creating affirmation card decks — and she's currently in the process of starting a second, video-editing business.

TurboTax Live answered Alana's questions about her taxes and gave her some much-needed advice as she prepared to launch her businesses. Thanks to their "little lift," they provided her with a little emotional support too.

"I got my mom a plane ticket to finally [have her] meet [my daughter] for her first birthday," Alana says. "I was also able to get a new computer," which helped her invest in her new business and work on her video editing skills. "It's helped my family and me so much," she says.


Michael, science teacher

When schools shut down across the country last year, Michael had to learn how to adapt to a virtual classroom.

"As a teacher, I had to completely revamp everything," he says, so that he could keep his students engaged while teaching online. "At the beginning, it was a nightmare because I had no idea. I had to go from A-Z within a couple of weeks."

Michael's TurboTax Live expert answered his questions about how working from home affected his taxes and helped him uncover surprising tax deductions. To top it all off, his expert surprised him with brand new science equipment and supplies, which allowed him to create an entire line of classes on YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook. "Now I can truly potentially reach millions of children with my lessons," he says. "I would never have taken that leap if not for the little lift from TurboTax Live."



Ricky, motivational youth speaker

As a motivational speaker, Ricky was used to doing his job in person, but, he says, "when COVID-19 hit, it altered my ability to travel and visit schools in person [because] schools moved to fully virtual or hybrid models."

He knew he had to pivot — so he began offering small virtual group workshops for student leadership groups at middle and high schools.

"This allowed me to work with student leaders to plan how they would continue making a positive impact on their school community," he says. He wasn't sure how being remote would affect his taxes, but TurboTax Live Self-Employed gave him the advice and answers that he needed to keep more money in his pocket at tax time — and the little lift he received from them has helped him serve even more students.

"[It] has been a major blessing," he says "There will be multiple schools and student groups from across the country that I can hold leadership workshops with to empower them with the tools to be inspirational leaders in their school, community, and world."

Plus, he says, it was great knowing he had an expert to help him figure out how being remote affected his taxes. "I felt confident and assured in the process of filing my taxes knowing I had an expert working with me, says Ricky. "There were things my expert knew that I would not have considered when filing on my own."

Filing your taxes doesn't have to be intimidating, especially after a year like 2020. TurboTax Live experts can give you the "little lift" you need to get your taxes done. File with the help of an expert or let an expert file for you! Go to TurboTax Live to get started.

The battle between millennials and older generations isn't exactly a generational war—it's more a case of mistaken generational identity. A decade ago, whining about millennials being young adults unprepared to make their way in the world at least made sense mathematically. But when people bag on millennials now they end up looking rather foolish.

A marketing researcher with a doctorate in social psychology wrote an op-ed for the Chicago Tribune titled "Post-pandemic, some millennials finally decide to start #adulting." And when the Tribune shared it to Twitter, their since-deleted tweet read, "Writer Jennifer Rosner predicts COVID-10 lockdowns will force easy-breezy millennials to grow up."

Hoo boy.

Interestingly, the writer of the op-ed is a millennial herself, but she repeats generalizations about her entire generation that seem like they mainly apply to her own social circle. Read it yourself to decide, but regardless, the tweet of the op-ed itself set off a firestorm of responses from millennials who are tired of being painted as irresponsible young people who don't know how to "adult" instead of what they actually are.

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True

2020 was difficult (to say the least). The year was full of life changes, losses, and lessons as we learned to navigate the "new normal." You may have questions about what the changes and challenges of 2020 mean for your taxes. That's where TurboTax Live comes in, making it easy to connect with real tax experts to help with your taxes – or even do them for you, start to finish.

Not only has TurboTax Live helped millions of people get their taxes done right, but this year they've also celebrated people who uplifted their communities during a difficult time by surprising them with "little lifts" to help out even more.

Here are a few of their stories:


Julz, hairdresser and salon owner

"As a hairdresser and salon owner, 2020 was extremely challenging," says Julz. "Being a hairdresser has historically been a recession-proof industry, but we've never faced global shut down due to health risk, or pandemic, not in my lifetime. And for the first time, hairdressers didn't have job security."

Julz had to shut down her salon and go on unemployment benefits for the first time. She also had to figure out how she was going to support herself, her staff and her business during this difficult time. But many other beauty industry professionals didn't have access to the resources they needed, so Julz decided to help.

"My business partner and I began teaching basic financial literacy to other beauty industry professionals," she says. "Transitioning our business from behind the chair to an online academy was a challenge we tackled head-on so that we could move hairdressers into this new space of education, and create a more accessible curriculum to better serve our industry.

Julz connected with a TurboTax Live expert who helped her understand how unemployment affected her taxes and gave her guidance on filing quarterly estimated taxes for her small business. "I was terrified to sit at a computer and tackle this mess of receipts," Julz says, so "it was great to have some virtual handholding to walk me through each question."

In addition to giving Julz the personalized tax advice she needed, TurboTax Live surprised her with a "little lift" that empowered her to help even more beauty professionals. "When my tax expert Diana surprised me with a little lift, I was moved to tears," says Julz. "With that little lift, I was able to establish a scholarship fund to help get other hairdressers the education they deserve."


Alana, new mom

Alana welcomed her first child in 2020. "I think my biggest challenge was figuring out how to be a mom, with no guidance," she says. "My original plan was to have my mom by my side, teaching me the ropes, but because of COVID, she wasn't able to come out here."

She was also without a job for most of 2020 and struggled to find something new.

So, Alana took it as a sign: she decided to launch her own business so she could support her new baby, and that's exactly what she did. She started a feel-good company that specializes in creating affirmation card decks — and she's currently in the process of starting a second, video-editing business.

TurboTax Live answered Alana's questions about her taxes and gave her some much-needed advice as she prepared to launch her businesses. Thanks to their "little lift," they provided her with a little emotional support too.

"I got my mom a plane ticket to finally [have her] meet [my daughter] for her first birthday," Alana says. "I was also able to get a new computer," which helped her invest in her new business and work on her video editing skills. "It's helped my family and me so much," she says.


Michael, science teacher

When schools shut down across the country last year, Michael had to learn how to adapt to a virtual classroom.

"As a teacher, I had to completely revamp everything," he says, so that he could keep his students engaged while teaching online. "At the beginning, it was a nightmare because I had no idea. I had to go from A-Z within a couple of weeks."

Michael's TurboTax Live expert answered his questions about how working from home affected his taxes and helped him uncover surprising tax deductions. To top it all off, his expert surprised him with brand new science equipment and supplies, which allowed him to create an entire line of classes on YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook. "Now I can truly potentially reach millions of children with my lessons," he says. "I would never have taken that leap if not for the little lift from TurboTax Live."



Ricky, motivational youth speaker

As a motivational speaker, Ricky was used to doing his job in person, but, he says, "when COVID-19 hit, it altered my ability to travel and visit schools in person [because] schools moved to fully virtual or hybrid models."

He knew he had to pivot — so he began offering small virtual group workshops for student leadership groups at middle and high schools.

"This allowed me to work with student leaders to plan how they would continue making a positive impact on their school community," he says. He wasn't sure how being remote would affect his taxes, but TurboTax Live Self-Employed gave him the advice and answers that he needed to keep more money in his pocket at tax time — and the little lift he received from them has helped him serve even more students.

"[It] has been a major blessing," he says "There will be multiple schools and student groups from across the country that I can hold leadership workshops with to empower them with the tools to be inspirational leaders in their school, community, and world."

Plus, he says, it was great knowing he had an expert to help him figure out how being remote affected his taxes. "I felt confident and assured in the process of filing my taxes knowing I had an expert working with me, says Ricky. "There were things my expert knew that I would not have considered when filing on my own."

Filing your taxes doesn't have to be intimidating, especially after a year like 2020. TurboTax Live experts can give you the "little lift" you need to get your taxes done. File with the help of an expert or let an expert file for you! Go to TurboTax Live to get started.