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https://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/health/fitness/caster-semenya-on-making-strides-that-go-far-beyond-competitive-confines-of-field-court-or-track-404d4468-df57-4b57-ad9e-ff565b73f367

Caster Semenya on making strides that go far beyond competitive confines of field, court or track

Caster Semenya was a household name way before 2008 when Semenya placed seventh in the 800m at the IAAF World Junior Championships at age 17.

At the Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG) in India Semenya set meet records [in the female category] for the distance, as well as at the African Junior Athletics Championships, where Semenya also set the fastest time [in the female category] in 2009 for any age category in the world for any distance in 1:56.72 (African Athletics, 2009).

However, Semenya's swift rise appeared to have drawn the attention of the IAAF, and the rumours about her deep voice and “masculine” characteristics were thought to be more typical of male runners than females.

Because of how “different” Semenya is, Semenya was suspected of doping.

No, as an elite athlete under IAAF governance, teenage Semenya would have had to undergo the mandatory urine and blood testing for PEDs that all elite athletes in the world are subjected to. The blood testing would have shown that Semenya has natural testosterone levels in the normal adult male range - something that is impossible for a female. The only people who can have natural T in the range that Semenya has are males with intact testes in good working order.

I don't recall anyone back in 2009 suggesting that Semenya might be doping. All the talk and speculation back then was about Semenya's sex and whether Semenya had a difference/disorder of male sex development.

Despite the smear campaign, Semenya's thrilling triumph at the World Championships increased the focus on the athlete's athletic prowess, and the IAAF declared that Semenya would have to undergo “gender verification” tests to see whether Semenya is truly female.

In 2017, World Athletics published research that suggested women with higher levels of naturally occurring testosterone had blatant, seemingly unfair advantages over other women when participating in specific sports events, like the 800m.

Semenya and the other athletes in the World Athletics research said to be "women higher levels of naturally occurring testosterone" are not women. They are all 46,XY males with disorders/differences of male sex development who've been permitted to compete in women's sports because of cockamamie rules that the men in charge of IAAF, IOC and other sports governing bodies came up with in the 1990s to cater to XY athletes with DMSDs. Because they felt sorry for them.

Semenya and all these other athletes with DMSDs who've been allowed to muscle in on elite women's sports all have testes that pump out massive amounts of testosterone as males customarily do. Some of them make sperm too. Chances are good that Semenya is the biological father of the two daughters that Semenya's wife Violet Raseboya has given birth to since 2019.

Semenya and the other XY athletes with DMSDs in women's sports also all have male genetics and functioning male androgen receptors - so their bodies respond to and utilize the massive amounts of natural T that their testes make as males and only males typically do.

Based on the study, Semenya – who holds two Olympic gold medals in the 800m – was barred from competing under the rules that prohibit athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD) from competing at distances ranging from 400m to the mile unless they use hormone-reducing drugs.

Semenya has not taken the ruling of the IAAF lying down, although the athlete admits that it has not been easy.

“I think like everyone else in life, you plan and map out your career and goals, with clear intentions on what you want to achieve. It is a devastating experience to be forced to stop doing what you love,” the athlete told IOL Lifestyle.

The two-time Olympic gold medallist in the [women's] 800m, the former world champion in the [women's] 800m, and the double Commonwealth games gold medallist in the [women's] middle distance is currently fighting to overturn a ban by the World Athletics Federation which prevents Semenya from running 400-1500m races unless she takes hormone-altering drugs.

The new name for the former IAAF is World Athletics, not "the World Athletics Federation."

LUX Born This Way campaign pledged support to Semenya in her fight against the IAAF for the right to perform and defend the 800m world championship title without the use of hormone-altering drugs in 2021.

The IAAF changed its name to World Athletics several years before LUX decided to back Semenya in fighting WA in 2021.

Due to Semenya’s ongoing battle, the South African champion is currently barred from competing unless she takes drugs that suppress her natural hormones, which is unfair.

This is a lie. Semenya and other XY athletes with similar DMSDs can still compete in women's events in shorter and longer distances without taking any medications to reduce the amount of T their testes pump out.

Semenya has continued competing in longer-distance women's track events, including the 2022 World Championships held by WA in Oregon. It's just that Semenya isn't very good at the longer-distance events, so Semenya doesn't win any of those races.

Francine Niyonsaba, one of the other XY athletes with DMSDs who won all the medals in the women's 800m at the 2016 Olympics, has successfully switched to running long distance events. Niyonsaba has now won Olympic and other medals, many championships and set a number of world, national, African and meet records in women's longer distance events.

Conversations hosted by businesswoman and content creator Mpoomy Ledwaba with Caster Semenya and LUX brand ambassador Zozibini Tunzi explore the complexities of overcoming the challenges of success as a black woman to bring to light the discriminatory suspension enforced by the IAAF.

Lux ambassador and longest reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi said something that incredibly encapsulated Semenya’s journey so beautifully: “It’s so incredible being African and black.”

She went on to say, “there’s something about being a successful black woman that people always want to look for something to scrutinise. You have to be extremely extraordinary to be where you are whereas if you’re anything else it’s expected, you have to explain yourself and defend yourself.”

Since refusing to take the hormone-altering drug which the IAAF did not explain how they would work Semenya has been on the sidelines.

Semenya has not been on the sidelines! Semenya has continued running, competing in women's events and getting lots of attention, endorsement deals and speaking gigs. Semenya, now 31, has also begun coaching and dabbled at playing professional women's soccer/football.

The only area Semenya has been sidelined from is the winner's podium in women's track.

The hormone-altering drug that WA suggested Semenya take to lower Semenya's natural testosterone is a daily oral estrogen tablet that female people use for contraception - eg, "the birth control pill." The medical experts at IAAF/WA explained how these pills work in the court proceedings in Semenya's case.

Presumably, the IAAF and Semenya's own doctors explained how estrogen pills work to Semenya before/during the the period from circa 2010 to 2015 when Semenya took them to lower Semenya's natural T. In the court proceedings and in many speaking gigs and press interviews Semenya has complained about how the estrogen pills made him feel. He said taking "the pill" was "torture, like stabbing yourself every day."

It can be very demoralising to have to stop playing a sport due to health reasons but for something that you have no control over, I cannot begin to imagine what Semenya must be going through.

But Semenya has not stopped playing sport. Semenya is still running and competing in women's running events too. Semenya is just not excelling and winning in women's running competition any more.

Multiple studies included in the 2012 International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology found that “athletes who experienced forced retirement … experienced high levels of negative emotions”.

Semenya has not been forced into retirement. Semenya has not retired from running. Semenya just isn't winning any more because Semenya isn't very good at the longer distances.

We asked if Semenya thought the ban was politically motivated. Disappointed that something meant to be a connector of people from all walks of life is tainted by political and racial prejudice in and of the field.

“Of course it was, that’s the one thing that cannot be ignored. This is by no means the end, for me, it’s for the love of the game – I value sportsmanship,” said Semenya.

Says one of the biggest bald-faced liars, con men and cheats ever to be in elite sports.

Did anyone explain how the hormone-reducing drugs would work and affect you in any way?

“No, of course they would not. Not truthfully anyway. They do not care about that or us and our livelihood or well-being at all, it’s clear.”

In no way did the association explain how Semenya supposedly benefited from her inherently higher testosterone than those of atypical females.

Dunno what they mean by "atypical females." I think they mean actual females.

But the IAAF/WA sure did explain - in detail - how Semenya's male DNA, male male gonads, male T levels and male androgen receptors benefits Semenya and gives Semenya an unfair advantage over females.

There's a 163-page document released to the public by the Court of Arbitration for Sport that sets out the evidence provided in court by the IAAF/WA showing that Semenya is a healthy biological male who has all the same sports advantages over females as other healthy biological males. The only difference is that Semenya has a DMSD that caused Semenya's penis not to develop fully or properly in utero and also caused Semenya to be born with his testes undescended or partially descended and thus in an unusual location.

It's because of the evidence provided in court by the IAAF/WA showing that Semenya is male not female that the court ruled against Semenya.

Of course, as a result of biological differences between the sexes, competitive sports segregate males and females. But how is being who you are considered a disadvantage for others?

“What is the benefit of being altered from being yourself?” said Semenya.

Everything that comes out of Semenya's mouth on this issue is a bald-faced lie, carefully-worded misinformation, obfuscation, or just besides-the-point deflection. And it's all "me me me."

https://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/health/fitness/caster-semenya-on-making-strides-that-go-far-beyond-competitive-confines-of-field-court-or-track-404d4468-df57-4b57-ad9e-ff565b73f367 >**Caster Semenya on making strides that go far beyond competitive confines of field, court or track** >Caster Semenya was a household name way before 2008 when Semenya placed seventh in the 800m at the IAAF World Junior Championships at age 17. >At the Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG) in India Semenya set meet records [in the female category] for the distance, as well as at the African Junior Athletics Championships, where Semenya also set the fastest time [in the female category] in 2009 for any age category in the world for any distance in 1:56.72 (African Athletics, 2009). >However, Semenya's swift rise appeared to have drawn the attention of the IAAF, and the rumours about her deep voice and “masculine” characteristics were thought to be more typical of male runners than females. >Because of how “different” Semenya is, Semenya was suspected of doping. No, as an elite athlete under IAAF governance, teenage Semenya would have had to undergo the mandatory urine and blood testing for PEDs that all elite athletes in the world are subjected to. The blood testing would have shown that Semenya has natural testosterone levels in the normal adult male range - something that is impossible for a female. The only people who can have natural T in the range that Semenya has are males with intact testes in good working order. I don't recall anyone back in 2009 suggesting that Semenya might be doping. All the talk and speculation back then was about Semenya's sex and whether Semenya had a difference/disorder of male sex development. >Despite the smear campaign, Semenya's thrilling triumph at the World Championships increased the focus on the athlete's athletic prowess, and the IAAF declared that Semenya would have to undergo “gender verification” tests to see whether Semenya is truly female. >In 2017, World Athletics published research that suggested women with higher levels of naturally occurring testosterone had blatant, seemingly unfair advantages over other women when participating in specific sports events, like the 800m. Semenya and the other athletes in the World Athletics research said to be "women higher levels of naturally occurring testosterone" are not women. They are all 46,XY males with disorders/differences of male sex development who've been permitted to compete in women's sports because of cockamamie rules that the men in charge of IAAF, IOC and other sports governing bodies came up with in the 1990s to cater to XY athletes with DMSDs. Because they felt sorry for them. Semenya and all these other athletes with DMSDs who've been allowed to muscle in on elite women's sports all have testes that pump out massive amounts of testosterone as males customarily do. Some of them make sperm too. Chances are good that Semenya is the biological father of the two daughters that Semenya's wife Violet Raseboya has given birth to since 2019. Semenya and the other XY athletes with DMSDs in women's sports also all have male genetics and functioning male androgen receptors - so their bodies respond to and utilize the massive amounts of natural T that their testes make as males and only males typically do. >Based on the study, Semenya – who holds two Olympic gold medals in the 800m – was barred from competing under the rules that prohibit athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD) from competing at distances ranging from 400m to the mile unless they use hormone-reducing drugs. >Semenya has not taken the ruling of the IAAF lying down, although the athlete admits that it has not been easy. >“I think like everyone else in life, you plan and map out your career and goals, with clear intentions on what you want to achieve. It is a devastating experience to be forced to stop doing what you love,” the athlete told IOL Lifestyle. >The two-time Olympic gold medallist in the [women's] 800m, the former world champion in the [women's] 800m, and the double Commonwealth games gold medallist in the [women's] middle distance is currently fighting to overturn a ban by the World Athletics Federation which prevents Semenya from running 400-1500m races unless she takes hormone-altering drugs. The new name for the former IAAF is World Athletics, not "the World Athletics Federation." >LUX Born This Way campaign pledged support to Semenya in her fight against the IAAF for the right to perform and defend the 800m world championship title without the use of hormone-altering drugs in 2021. The IAAF changed its name to World Athletics several years before LUX decided to back Semenya in fighting WA in 2021. >Due to Semenya’s ongoing battle, the South African champion is currently barred from competing unless she takes drugs that suppress her natural hormones, which is unfair. This is a lie. Semenya and other XY athletes with similar DMSDs can still compete in women's events in shorter and longer distances without taking any medications to reduce the amount of T their testes pump out. Semenya has continued competing in longer-distance women's track events, including the 2022 World Championships held by WA in Oregon. It's just that Semenya isn't very good at the longer-distance events, so Semenya doesn't win any of those races. Francine Niyonsaba, one of the other XY athletes with DMSDs who won all the medals in the women's 800m at the 2016 Olympics, has successfully switched to running long distance events. Niyonsaba has now won Olympic and other medals, many championships and set a number of world, national, African and meet records in women's longer distance events. >Conversations hosted by businesswoman and content creator Mpoomy Ledwaba with Caster Semenya and LUX brand ambassador Zozibini Tunzi explore the complexities of overcoming the challenges of success as a black woman to bring to light the discriminatory suspension enforced by the IAAF. >Lux ambassador and longest reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi said something that incredibly encapsulated Semenya’s journey so beautifully: “It’s so incredible being African and black.” >She went on to say, “there’s something about being a successful black woman that people always want to look for something to scrutinise. You have to be extremely extraordinary to be where you are whereas if you’re anything else it’s expected, you have to explain yourself and defend yourself.” >Since refusing to take the hormone-altering drug which the IAAF did not explain how they would work Semenya has been on the sidelines. Semenya has not been on the sidelines! Semenya has continued running, competing in women's events and getting lots of attention, endorsement deals and speaking gigs. Semenya, now 31, has also begun coaching and dabbled at playing professional women's soccer/football. The only area Semenya has been sidelined from is the winner's podium in women's track. The hormone-altering drug that WA suggested Semenya take to lower Semenya's natural testosterone is a daily oral estrogen tablet that female people use for contraception - eg, "the birth control pill." The medical experts at IAAF/WA explained how these pills work in the court proceedings in Semenya's case. Presumably, the IAAF and Semenya's own doctors explained how estrogen pills work to Semenya before/during the the period from circa 2010 to 2015 when Semenya took them to lower Semenya's natural T. In the court proceedings and in many speaking gigs and press interviews Semenya has complained about how the estrogen pills made him feel. He said taking "the pill" was "torture, like stabbing yourself every day." >It can be very demoralising to have to stop playing a sport due to health reasons but for something that you have no control over, I cannot begin to imagine what Semenya must be going through. But Semenya has not stopped playing sport. Semenya is still running and competing in women's running events too. Semenya is just not excelling and winning in women's running competition any more. >Multiple studies included in the 2012 International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology found that “athletes who experienced forced retirement … experienced high levels of negative emotions”. Semenya has not been forced into retirement. Semenya has not retired from running. Semenya just isn't winning any more because Semenya isn't very good at the longer distances. >We asked if Semenya thought the ban was politically motivated. Disappointed that something meant to be a connector of people from all walks of life is tainted by political and racial prejudice in and of the field. >“Of course it was, that’s the one thing that cannot be ignored. This is by no means the end, for me, it’s for the love of the game – I value sportsmanship,” said Semenya. Says one of the biggest bald-faced liars, con men and cheats ever to be in elite sports. >Did anyone explain how the hormone-reducing drugs would work and affect you in any way? >“No, of course they would not. Not truthfully anyway. They do not care about that or us and our livelihood or well-being at all, it’s clear.” >In no way did the association explain how Semenya supposedly benefited from her inherently higher testosterone than those of atypical females. Dunno what they mean by "atypical females." I think they mean actual females. But the IAAF/WA sure did explain - in detail - how Semenya's male DNA, male male gonads, male T levels and male androgen receptors benefits Semenya and gives Semenya an unfair advantage over females. There's a 163-page document released to the public by the Court of Arbitration for Sport that sets out the evidence provided in court by the IAAF/WA showing that Semenya is a healthy biological male who has all the same sports advantages over females as other healthy biological males. The only difference is that Semenya has a DMSD that caused Semenya's penis not to develop fully or properly in utero and also caused Semenya to be born with his testes undescended or partially descended and thus in an unusual location. It's because of the evidence provided in court by the IAAF/WA showing that Semenya is male not female that the court ruled against Semenya. >Of course, as a result of biological differences between the sexes, competitive sports segregate males and females. But how is being who you are considered a disadvantage for others? >“What is the benefit of being altered from being yourself?” said Semenya. Everything that comes out of Semenya's mouth on this issue is a bald-faced lie, carefully-worded misinformation, obfuscation, or just besides-the-point deflection. And it's all "me me me."

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