Welcome back! I stumbled across this case a few days ago, and the internet has been fuming. So am I! This whole case is so ridiculous. Today, I will talk about the case of Caster Semenya, a female south African competitive runner, and how this exposes the deeply rooted racism and sexism that has been existing in sports for years.
Now, if you have never heard of this case, you’re either not on twitter or living under an actual rock. However, I will explain this case to you. 28 year old Caster Semenya is a South African competitive runner who has made waves in different running competitions around the world, earning many golden and silver medals. According to Wikipedia, Mokgadi Caster Semenya OIB is a South African middle-distance runner and 2016 Olympic gold medalist. Semenya won gold in the women’s 800 metres at the 2009 World Championships with a time of 1:55.45 and at the 2017 World Championships in her new personal best, 1:55.16.
Now, I will talk about the case. Recently, there has been conversation that Semenya simply is not “woman enough”, and therefore should not compete anymore as this is unfair for the other runners. She has taken many testosterone level tests, and now they have come to the preposterous conclusion to ban women with high testosterone levels from competing in sports of the female division. They have even said that Semenya will have to take medications TO LOWER HER TESTOSTERONE LEVELS if she wants to continue competing.
Now, while you may argue that it is unfair for girls with lower testosterone levels to compete with a woman like Caster Semenya with much higher levels, it cannot be debated the sheer unethical nature of this ruling. How is it okay to force somebody to change the way their natural body is, because you have deemed them *not womanly* enough? completely unfair. This is where the sexism comes in. It seems to me that any woman who breaks the stereotype of a typical woman is seen as less of a female; a freak of nature just because she is not hyper-feminine. No woman owes you hyper-femininity, Not a single one. Also, I do not think that the cries and wines of sore losers should be enough to make a woman alter her body. If you want to beat her, it is simple: train twice or thrice as hard as her. Forcing a woman to reduce her testosterone levels to make things “fair” is not fair at all.
I am sure you are now wondering, where does the racism come in? Very simple. A lot of black women in sports have gone through such controversies as well as Semenya. And lot of black women (especially the dark skinned ones) have a naturally higher testosterone level in comparison to other girls of other nationalities. Hence, this is why a lot of black women have “harsher” facial features, like a more chiseled bone structure. While Semenya’s testosterone level cannot be compared to a regular black woman, let us take a trip down memory lane, shall we? Do you all remember when Serena Williams, Venus Williams and many other black women in sport were receiving drug tests and testosterone level tests for absolutely no reason? yeah, I didn’t forget. Dark-skinned Black women with pronounced facial features, how many times have you been called a boy? I will wait.
And yes, that is pretty much it. She has lost this case, and she might no longer be able to run as herself, but a body that is perceived to be more “womanly”. This world is absolutely disgusting.
Thank you so much for reading! If you enjoyed this, like this post. Leave a comment down below if you agree with this. Do you think it was right for them to do what they did to Caster Semenya? or do you resonate with this post? Until next time!