August 20, 2009

You Are A Woman? Prove It!

This is really interesting, and I can admit ... I'm not too sure where I stand. The International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) has demanded a gender test on an 18-year-old South African who recently won 800 meters gold at the World Athletics Championships.

It appears some questions have risen regarding Caster Semenya's masculine build ... and the fact that she has pulverized even her own records. It stinks that because a woman is fast, or strong, that there are questions (or jokes) that she must be a man. BUT, there is also such a desire to excel in sports that switching genders would not surprise me. Athletes lie about their ages and use performance enhancing drugs. Some athletes even take a baseball bat to the legs of the competition. Why not blur the gender line a bit? The idea is not completely new, movies (although not good ones) have been made about the very idea.

If they do the testing and find out that Semenya is "all woman", then this is a horrible situation. An innocent woman's career and life have been put under the microscope on the basis of false accusations. But if they find out that she is not a woman? And how do we define that? What exactly makes/defines a woman from a man? And who is the one to determine this?

Looks like we might have opened up a new can of worms in society as a whole, and I guess I'm wondering at what point the ends justify the means :)

Here are some pictures of Semenya, and looking at them ... I am a bit curious too! I'm not at all suprised the issue is out there (Semenya herself has admitted that she has issues in women's restrooms and has been refused entry to them in the past) but the gender testing is certainly an interesting turn of events.

And comparing these pictures, Semenya might have been better in the role that Amanda Bynes played in She's The Man ... a movie in which Amanda was trying very hard to look masculine.

1 comment:

meanjean said...

I just saw this on cnn yesterday--- its so odd. Thats what i wonder, too. What exactly defines her as a woman (or him as a man)? If she is intersexed, or has mismatched chromosomes shell be banned from professional sports, i think they said. That seems wrong!