Friday, August 21, 2009

gender bender.

If you're a reader of this web log, you probably spend your free time perusing the internetS while you should be working (after you've been through every new photo album on Facebook, of course). So, the story of Caster Semenya, the South African teenage running sensation is probably old news to you. I mean, how could you miss this? At first, like many of you, I thought "she" is taking Aerosmith's "Dude Looks Like a Lady" to a whole new level. But, then I started to really think about it and I just got a little bit sad for her.

You see, I, much like Caster (can I just say, that is quite an unfortunate name. If "her" name was Sally or Susan she might not be going through all of this) was quite the phenom of athletic prowess growing up. Once, in fourth grade my basketball coach pulled me out of the game and told me he'd only put me back in if I promised to quit shooting. I obviously promised to quit humiliating the other team with my superb lay-up skills on an eight-foot goal and went back onto the court. Seconds later I scored my 20th point and was taken back out. Afterwards the other team hung their head in shame and admired my obvious abilities, but they never questioned my gender! They never said, "Wow, only a boy would be able to dribble with their left hand at this age! She must be a he!" And I even had a bowl cut.

What I'm saying is, girls can be talented athletes. Girls can run fast. Girls can dribble with their left hand.

And then, I'm also saying, what the hell, people? If "she" is actually a he, what kind of tests does "she" need to take? I can only think of one. Even in this complex world of technology only one way comes to mind. Just one. It's fairly simple, too.

And to say a few more things, what if "she" is a she, then what? I'm afraid she may be scarred for life, world-class athlete or not, who wants to marry a "she" that had to undergo gender tests because of concerns she does not meet requirements to compete as a woman. Hello, hours of therapy.

This also raises the question of a transgender competing in an athletic event. What question I do not know, but I bet there are some.

I'll leave you with a quote from my junior high basketball coach, who had no impact on my life whatsoever, minus this gem of a quotable, "A little bit of effort goes a long way."


Erin said...

Good point. And what does it really matter anyway!

By your blog title I thought you were going to reminisce about gender blender day during spirit week at NHS....were we the only ones that had this? I am assuming it was common. I think this "day" messed up a few of my classmates...if you smell what I am stepping in

Jordan said...

haha, LC~ wow, that first paragraph was refering to me- i've checked all of facebook for new information, then all my blogs, and then I got to yours (thanks for updating). But I hadn't heard about that (s)he. But thanks for giving me something to kill at least 15 minutes until it is finally 5

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