South African Newspaper Claims That People Who Question Caster Semenya's Gender Are Racist
Track and Field

'She' Has A Deep Voice, A Moustache, And Looks Like A Guy, But If You Question Caster Semenya, You're Racist.

8/21/09 in Track and Field   |   Pat   |   5232 respect

Aside from the fact that "she" claims to be female, there are no signs whatsoever that would give the average person the impression that South African runner Caster Semenya is a woman. Even while defending her, a writer for a South African newspaper admits that she's a tomboy with excessive body hair and a deep voice. If you look at her, she looks a lot like many men her age.

However, according to that same writer who talked about all of her man-like qualities, people are only accusing Semenya of being a man because they are racist. Forget the fact that "she" is manlier than most men I know, it MUST be because she's black, right?

"This is just pure unadulterated jealousy and it's being done because she is black and African!

She is best described as a tomboy. She likes, among other things, wrestling. She also has a deep voice. It seems she also sports a moustache. All these features make the allegation seem likely. But, who has a right to argue with her parents when they say their child is a girl? Shouldn't they be the ones to know?

For us in South Africa, Semenya is our golden girl and no amount of jealousy or false allegations are going to convince us otherwise.
"

There's so much wrong with that logic that it makes my head spin.

I really don't care what this individual's gender is. But it is not that difficult to verify. Can someone please test this runner and get this settled once and for all?


If You Question This Lady's Ovaries, You're A Hatemonger [Deadspin]
Semenya, our queen of the 800m [Guardian]
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8/26/09   |   feel_the_steel   |   9 respect

Did anyone hear about her/his test results? Yahoo sports has an article reporting that her/his testosterone levels are 3 times higher than normal. No time to grab the link.....sorry.

8/26/09   |   Pat   |   5232 respect

On the outskirts of Johannesburg, in Soweto, there were no white people anywhere to be seen. That's what I was referring to as an "all-black community".

8/26/09   |   sadigitalfilms

 Once again, with all due respect,  PAT, having lived in South Africa for 34 years I think my opinion of things may be a little broader. "I would even say it's offensive for you to refer to things like a deep voice, moustache and manly facial features as "black physique"." - I never said that. The black physique comment was referring to an American commentator's comment at the champs. I said there are many people with those "manly" features here, which there are, and I certainly didn't mean it as an insult. "I spent a lot of time in some of the all-black communities. " - which "black" communities? What are "black" communities? We live in a country with ELEVEN official languages, and over 20 different tribes. Caster, who comes from Limpopo, looks nothing like someone from Kwazulu, or from the Xhosa regions, other than her skin colour. I'm not meaning this an attack on what you're saying, but it is naive, it's like spending time in Greece and saying I know the French (though France & Greece are geographically closer to each other than the Sotho people are to the Xhosa tribes).  Sadly the world media has shown us, and some of the comments here, that racism isn't black and white. Maybe we need a new word - Sometimes it's nationalist or continentalist. Maybe not living in Africa, people won't see the ridiculous comments made about my home. Not just to do with this case, but everything including the 2010 world cup. The media often say things that make people presume that African countries are centuries behind the rest of the world, but in many places, the only differences you will find from your home, are the languages and accents. The gender issue may not be a racist one, but some of the media coverage, and comments by athletes, "experts", etc. have been. Suggestions that she came out of a bush and our associations are all corrupt, perhaps there are examples of this in African history, but considering she is a sports science student at 1 of the top 10 universities offering the degree, that she comes from a country with the highest regard for all sport, and world champions in many codes, and with a rich history of success, to think that  she wasn't given all the "basic" tests would again be naive. These were all done, and she is a she by all legal accounts. Caster Semanya IS A WOMAN. All tests so far have proved as much. The IAAF are running these comprehensive tests to prove whether she may have some advantage because of higher testosterone levels, etc. which sadly may lead to a bad precedent. Now every time a woman is beaten by a physically superior woman, will she bring up this sort of thing? Will the far more muscular Williams sisters be tested next? Maybe the last comment has some points, these things should have been dealt with before, maybe when she ran in Portugal at the beginning of the year, but then her times weren't so impressive, so the world ignored her. The IAAF make it out like she burst into their eyesight just 3 weeks before the event. No she just succeeded then. Until I am told otherwise though, I will rather celebrate the achievements of this brave talented 18 year old who has had to endure such scrutiny and kept her head held high. This poor girl went through years of having to "pull her pants down" to prove she was a girl at school, and junior events. Let's hope she and others don't have to have that kind of humiliation again, especially in the world press....

8/25/09   |   arefdee

If the queries were made when she entered the competition then all the logic written here would apply. But it seems they only queried her gender after she blew away the rest of the field. And while ppl are deeming the criticism racist I think the big finger is pointed at the South African authorities who must have faced this question when Semenya first came to their notice. They must have satisfied themselves first! So if anyone is under scrutiny here I would say its the South African authorities...

8/24/09   |   liveyourdreams25

I absolutely agree with this. I was appaulled that they would go as far as to try to do a gender test on this female because of her uniqueness. Having a deep voice and having a muscular build is not enough to have warranted this. I know a lot of females that are quite like that, but come on... to say take a gender test to prove that you are a woman is a bit much. I hope this mess is over and she can go forward. But I would be pissed if I were her or her family. It's so crazy.

8/24/09   |   hmclaughlin_04

it's only human to be curious, however we have all got to exercise a lot of sensitivity when we question people's uniqueness.......she is no more manly than a lot of female athletes from the past...especially the germans etc. I just like the competition, these are special people who work hard at what they do....congrats to all of them.

8/22/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

sadigitalfilms wrote:
  With all due, respect, it is because of her BLACK physique that makes people question. One commentator called HER a NBA star look-a-like. None of the butch, but less muscular Eastern European WHITE women were questioned. Go to South Africa, there are many women who look like men there because of their characteristics, i.e. short curly hair, strong facial features, etc. I do hope nothing like this ever happens to your sisters or daughters, or you can remember what you wrote here, and remember that bigotry comes in all shapes and sizes, just like men and women.

I disagree.... I know plenty of white East German women from the good old soviet days looked plenty manly to me... I'd have asked that they get tested too.

8/22/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

(Edited by WhoDat12)

Well ladyrene, I wasn't gonna say anything, but since you brought it up.....

8/22/09   |   Pat   |   5232 respect

sadigitalfilms wrote:
  With all due, respect, it is because of her BLACK physique that makes people question. One commentator called HER a NBA star look-a-like. None of the butch, but less muscular Eastern European WHITE women were questioned. Go to South Africa, there are many women who look like men there because of their characteristics, i.e. short curly hair, strong facial features, etc. I do hope nothing like this ever happens to your sisters or daughters, or you can remember what you wrote here, and remember that bigotry comes in all shapes and sizes, just like men and women.

I've been to South Africa. I was a sophomore in high school at the time, and I spent a lot of time in some of the all-black communities. I did not have a single problem differentiating males from females. It has nothing to do with her "black" physique. It has to do with her manly physique and features. In fact, I would even say it's offensive for you to refer to things like a deep voice, moustache and manly facial features as "black physique".

8/22/09   |   hmunster1313   |   5 respect

wrote:
LAMO>>>>> now I know you are not doubting me!!!!!

WOW!!      NO DOUBTING FROM HERE.

8/22/09   |   sadigitalfilms

  With all due, respect, it is because of her BLACK physique that makes people question. One commentator called HER a NBA star look-a-like. None of the butch, but less muscular Eastern European WHITE women were questioned. Go to South Africa, there are many women who look like men there because of their characteristics, i.e. short curly hair, strong facial features, etc. I do hope nothing like this ever happens to your sisters or daughters, or you can remember what you wrote here, and remember that bigotry comes in all shapes and sizes, just like men and women.

8/22/09   |   ladijen2001

wrote:
IF her  ( his ) parents have lied to her her ( his ) ( his )whole life... I say we put them in a ring with one of Mike Vicks Dogs.

..he made it...

8/21/09   |   blondie45044   |   5873 respect

I did not know racism was a fact in determination of a man or woman athlete! The race card once again abused to make some news.

8/21/09   |   Debi_L   |   11848 respect

BluDevil wrote:
Have you heard the details of what it takes to prove your gender? She has to go to a gynecologist, a endocrinologist and a psychologist. Now I get the gynecologist and endocrinologist... but a psychologist? What is that about? In case her parents have lied to her for her whole life and she really is a man?

there are people who were born with both sex organs, raised one way when they should have been raised another, who have been conflicted all their lives.  If this were the case here and the external genitalia were removed (trying desperately to be PG13 here) so that "she" could be raised female, BUT it turns out that was the wrong choice, a psychologist is DEFINITELY needed!!

8/21/09   |   tevonjohnson1   |   41 respect

 Not all women have breast but has anyone checked her throat. She may even be a transgender but still check her throat. 

8/21/09   |   hmunster1313   |   5 respect

MrOrangeman wrote:
Hey Dude. Way to go with trying to make your point with the CAPS LOCK button on!  What are you like five years old???

YEAH...I'M FIVE JACKHOLE!!

8/21/09   |   Mamba24

wrote:
She has no boobies.  NO BOOBIES.

I think your right. They're just haters!!

8/21/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

Have you heard the details of what it takes to prove your gender? She has to go to a gynecologist, a endocrinologist and a psychologist. Now I get the gynecologist and endocrinologist... but a psychologist? What is that about? In case her parents have lied to her for her whole life and she really is a man?

8/21/09   |   feel_the_steel   |   9 respect

wrote:
She has no boobies.  NO BOOBIES.

8/21/09   |   Eric_   |   7716 respect

Heyhey1970 wrote:
I'm not surpised that the author assumed a link between the discussion of her/his sex and race.  Everything seems like a racial issue in South Africa, because it has been that way.  What a fascinating story.

Yeah, given the history, I'm not shocked someone tried to go there. Whatever. We'll find out in a few weeks the results of the test anyway.

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

wrote:
Since Obama became president...... isn't it vogue to yell racism.......... besides if your Black.. you can always play the race card... even if it has nothing to do with facts....... its like a woman crying... it has nothing to do with the truth...... but usually stops the arguement!!!

You're right. The race card is so overused that when something actually is racism, no one wants to hear about it. It's a real life example of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf"

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

wrote:
Where are the breasts??? I would demand a showing... before I trusted this was a woman...... and even then I think I would have my doubts!!!

I demand a showing of breasts too....just not the shim's breasts.

8/21/09   |   zzj000   |   388 respect

How the hell did the US ever evolve into a society where criticism of a Black person is ALWAYS deemed racist by a big part of the black community? I dont get it............... Am I the only one in the country that still thinks that the line in "Stripes" ... Black guys help the White guys ....... was humor and not racist.
C'mon America... Where is the Love?

As for the African athlete... Maybe we need Crocodile Dundee to investigate.............

8/21/09   |   MrOrangeman   |   42 respect

hmunster1313 wrote:
WHY DOES IT ALWAYS REFER TO RACISM! I DONT GET IT!!  IF SHE OR "IT" WERE HISPANIC, ASIAN, WHATEV, IT ALWAYS REFERS BACK TO RACISM! GET OVER THE COLOR THING. F*%K! I'M TIRED OF IT. IT IS WHAT IT IS. IF "IT" IS A CHICK OR NOT, LETS FIND OUT, THEN DEAL WITH IT FROM THERE. THE COLOR OF THE SKIN IS NOT AN ISSUE IN THIS CASE. SOMEBODY WANTS TO KNOW IF "IT" HAS A TWIG N BERRIES!  PLEASE IF THEY FIND OUT ITS A FEMALE, SOMEBODY INTRODUCE HER TO A FRIGGIN RAZOR!! 

Hey Dude. Way to go with trying to make your point with the CAPS LOCK button on!  What are you like five years old???

8/21/09   |   MrOrangeman   |   42 respect

wrote:
Where are the breasts??? I would demand a showing... before I trusted this was a woman...... and even then I think I would have my doubts!!!

Where are the breasts???  You do know that there are women out there that are flatchested right???  Many female body builders have any breasts at all, sometimes.

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

MrOrangeman wrote:
I'm saddened that Eddie Murphy doesn't do his stand up act any more........"SHE'S GOT A MUSTACHE!! Weehhhhhh!"

Twelve years ago, Eddie Murphy was caught in a car with a transvestite hooker, so he may not be the proper authority on this subject. Just sayin...

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

MrOrangeman wrote:
I'm saddened that Eddie Murphy doesn't do his stand up act any more........"SHE'S GOT A MUSTACHE!! Weehhhhhh!"

Twelve years ago, Eddie Murphy was caught in a car with a transvestite hooker, so he may not be the proper authority on this subject. Just sayin...

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

srvntofjesus wrote:
i really just cant com up with.    She or he  is not that pleasing to the eyes.

This could be good news for Chris Bosh though....

8/21/09   |   srvntofjesus   |   13 respect

i really just cant com up with.    She or he  is not that pleasing to the eyes.

8/21/09   |   hmunster1313   |   5 respect

WHY DOES IT ALWAYS REFER TO RACISM! I DONT GET IT!!  IF SHE OR "IT" WERE HISPANIC, ASIAN, WHATEV, IT ALWAYS REFERS BACK TO RACISM! GET OVER THE COLOR THING. F*%K! I'M TIRED OF IT. IT IS WHAT IT IS. IF "IT" IS A CHICK OR NOT, LETS FIND OUT, THEN DEAL WITH IT FROM THERE. THE COLOR OF THE SKIN IS NOT AN ISSUE IN THIS CASE. SOMEBODY WANTS TO KNOW IF "IT" HAS A TWIG N BERRIES!  PLEASE IF THEY FIND OUT ITS A FEMALE, SOMEBODY INTRODUCE HER TO A FRIGGIN RAZOR!! 

8/21/09   |   Heyhey1970   |   194 respect

I'm not surpised that the author assumed a link between the discussion of her/his sex and race.  Everything seems like a racial issue in South Africa, because it has been that way.  What a fascinating story.

8/21/09   |   MrNFL   |   175 respect

Pat wrote:

EPIC WIN!

8/21/09   |   billywa   |   658 respect

Dude looks like a lady?  Not so much...

8/21/09   |   Slyrad   |   89 respect

Ahh reminds me of the good ole dayz!  Back when I would roam the streets on NYC and just hope fo da best!  :)

8/21/09   |   marcelle_aw

I think the questions arose because losers are unwilling to accept the fact the she 'blew away' the competition...

8/21/09   |   Capnkrunch87   |   1 respect

My mind is blown, if you look like a man, act like a man and talk like a man common sense should tell you the odds of you being accused of being a man are almost a certainty it doesn't matter what race you are. I don't like how the writer falls back on it being fueled by racism, seriously connect the dots here how does determining a persons gender have anything to do with their race; oh wait it doesn't thats just called pure and utter ignorance.

8/21/09   |   JCAL9   |   59 respect

Ummm... If she truly is a female & all her characteristics are that of a man,  Perhaps they should test her for PED's/Roids.. I'm just saying..

8/21/09   |   ohwell_   |   16341 respect

Remember PAT  the charachter on Saturday Night Live ?

8/21/09   |   MrOrangeman   |   42 respect

(Edited by MrOrangeman)

I'm saddened that Eddie Murphy doesn't do his stand up act any more........"SHE'S GOT A MUSTACHE!! Weehhhhhh!"

8/21/09   |   jinenglish68v3   |   2 respect

drn0iswatr wrote:
wow...after reading the first part of the title I swore you wrote about my high school girlfriend.

You dated her too?

8/21/09   |   johnshirey54   |   162 respect

(Edited by johnshirey54)

It would be totally unheard of for a parent to lie for a child now wouldn't it.

8/21/09   |   drn0iswatr   |   731 respect

Pat wrote:

 excellent captain picard reference. Thank you. +100000000000000000000

8/21/09   |   Pat   |   5232 respect

drn0iswatr wrote:
wow...after reading the first part of the title I swore you wrote about my high school girlfriend.

8/21/09   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

I didn't know that wondering if a lady has a frank & beans made you racist

8/21/09   |   drn0iswatr   |   731 respect

wow...after reading the first part of the title I swore you wrote about my high school girlfriend.