The Semenya debate is missing the fundamental points in the name of African politics

Editor, A lot of folks are wasting good ink manipulating the gender-based and ethnic-based politics around Caster Semenya. They keep on missing the fundamental point in this effort to support their “home” girl.
Caster Semenya leading the field in the Berlin Athletics Championships. Her gender status has caused a furore in South Africa.
Caster Semenya leading the field in the Berlin Athletics Championships. Her gender status has caused a furore in South Africa.

Editor,

A lot of folks are wasting good ink manipulating the gender-based and ethnic-based politics around Caster Semenya. They keep on missing the fundamental point in this effort to support their “home” girl.

This case is very simple; it is the fundamental human right (and expectation) of equal opportunity between all competitors. Everybody starts from the same line, everybody runs exactly the same distance, everybody is fueled by the same engine capacity.

Nobody should be allowed to race Porsches against the VW Beetles because it is not fair and the results are obviously skewered.

That is all that the International Athletics Committee must enforce through the various tests and verification procedures.

Just because one feels and dresses like a girl does not change biological reality.

The engine capacities are markedly different between men and women. Caster Semenya therefore had the primary obligation to declare “herself” as being “wired” just a little different from the other female competitors.

This would have given the Athletics Committee the opportunity to defuse her gender contradictions in a more private setting.

However the decision to compete “under cover” was fraudulent and she deserves every exposure for the sake of the other competitors.

What we need is public transparency for double-gendered folks like Caster Semenya to admit their reality. So that the Olympic Committee can deliberate and create a new class of athletics in which double-genders can compete equally with one another-like the Para-Olympics.

“Maringa, Margaret”
Margaret.Maringa@carefirst.com

 

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