South African Athlete Faces Gender Test

sameeeMy personal thoughts after reading this story revolve around the fact that many top female athletes have body frames and muscular physiques that are far more defined than that of the average woman. While I understand the curiosity surrounding South African distance runner Semenya Caster’s physique and male characteristics, I mainly question the audacity and timing of it all. She’s fairly new on the world stage in athletics, but this kind of subjugation is shocking to say the very least. I’m trying to understand the official reasoning for ordering the test, other than her blowing all the other ladies out of the water with her official times, but more than anything it’s my hope that during the gender testing process that’s been ordered by the IAAF, she is treated with the utmost respect. This situation appears to be somewhat humiliating  beneath the surface, but her family, coach and teammates seem to be sticking by her side thus far. It’s sad to see such a young persons life played out in the media so heavily while dealing with a personal and very private matter; the question of ones sex. In any case, she won the gold so major congratulations to her and I’m hoping for a positive outcome.

According to The Daily Mail, Semenya’s mother; Mrs Sekgala, 80, said: ‘I know she’s a woman. I raised her myself.’

I’m very curious to see how all this pans out. If this claim is proved groundless, then apologies are due. She performed well under intense scrutiny and pressure. I’ll be following this story in the coming weeks when the test results are expected to be complete. Read the update on Semenya’s status here.

Semenya left stranded by storm

Tom Fordyce | 23:07 UK time, Wednesday, 19 August 2009

When Usain Bolt is no longer the main topic of conversation at the World Championships, you know something dramatic must have happened.

There had been whispers circulating about South African 800m prodigy Caster Semenya ever since she ran a spectacular 1 minute 56.72 seconds in a low-key meet on 26 July.

Not only was it the fastest time in the world this year by more than a second, it meant she had improved her personal best by seven seconds in less than nine months. And, she said afterwards, she could have run even quicker had it not been for a strong wind on the back straight.

For once, the tittle-tattle was not the usual sort about performance-enhancing substances. This was more basic and a whole lot nastier: was the ‘she’ actually a ‘he’? 

It wasn’t just the rapid time. Semenya has a well-muscled physique. She also has a dusting of facial hair. Mix those three things together and ugly rumours spread like wildfire.

What no-one quite expected was the way the story would suddenly develop with the 800m final just hours away.

Earlier in the week, it had been the stuff of bar-room banter. The favourite quote was from Semenya’s coach Michael Seme, who had told reporters: “I can give you the telephone numbers of her room-mates in Berlin. They have already seen her naked in the showers and she has nothing to hide.”

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4 Responses to “South African Athlete Faces Gender Test”
  1. Mellogyrl says:

    I actually just finished reading about this on BBC's site. I for one strongly disagree with there reason for questioning her gender because of the time(a world leading time of 1 minute 56.72 seconds)she ran at the African junior championships in Bambous, Maruitius at the end of July.

    Unfortunately Semenya will once again be subjected to the glare of the media spotlight on Thursday at about 1730 BST when she is due to be presented with her gold medal after winning the 800m final in a new world leading time of 1 minute 55.45 seconds.

    If her gender is being questioned for the times she puts up, then the genders of the guys running with Bolt should be checked to see if they are women because they can't seem to keep up with him lol. I mean, come on people!!! Yes her physique resembles that of a man but i know other women that have a similar built, but fortunately for them they don't break records and are put under a microscope for the world to see!!!
    Like you I'm interested to see the outcome of this!!! This could have been handled differently the media has made this matter into somewhat of a circus act!!!
    .-= Mellogyrl´s last blog ..Searching =-.

  2. AnnieCash says:

    I feel like it's racism again. African Americans seems to be under suspicion when we accomplish unprecedented goals. If I'm not mistaken the Kenyans were barred from a race, several years ago. A Harvard Professor was under suspicion at his own home. Some races are always suspicious of others. I believe that make some be suspicious of those suspicious ones.

  3. Azaan says:

    I think this is absolutely awful for anyone to publicly humiliated in such a way! I am so very proud that she won the Gold Medal. I just pray that once the results are in, they will all get in line to kiss her ass!

  4. Tami says:

    this is unfortunate. at the end of the day when they confirm she is a female…the competitors who accused her of being a male will still be losers. people used to be able to lose gracefully. not so anymore.

    i hope she comes through this and doesn't break her will or spirit…and whoops their asses one more time for good measure 🙂
    .-= Tami´s last blog ..I’m Engaged! =-.

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