How hard is it to know if an elite athlete is a woman? (Read 2187 times)


Needs more cowbell!

     

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/semenya-has-no-womb-or-ovaries/story-e6frexni-1225771672245

     

    Thank you.  Man, the ASA really created an avoidable mess of things.  Caster is a victim.  Even if it is determined that she can keep her medal (which it only seems fair that she should), it seems that her competitors could feel understandably slighted.  The woman who just missed a podium position can't be feeling great about things, either.

    I shoot pretty things! ~

    '14 Goals:

    • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

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    Top 'O the World!

       

       Man, the ASA really created an avoidable mess of things.  Caster is a victim.  Even if it is determined that she can keep her medal (which it only seems fair that she should), 

       

      And I think the IAAF & the supposed "reputable" jerk journalist for "leaking" unreleased/unsubstantiated information in the first place!  The whole thing is asinine - to trash Caster & her family in public though, is nothing new to these ppl....they have a long standing habit of doing just that. (anybody read the Zola Budd articles? to name just one more)  

       

      I see as that she has an unconfirmed health problem. Nothing more. She did not cheat. She deserves to keep the medal that she earned. Her health condition & resolution is none of our business.  

       

      Just something to ponder on the whole "how could she  not know" issue ~ there was a female athlete on my cross country team in high school. ,  tall, slim (very low BMI), muscularly defined but not bulky,  Nordic, quite w/o discernible hips/breasts (feminine face) kept her hair short,. trained ridiculous amts of hours. took state titles. It was 'known' in the locker room that she hadn't yet started menses - even by graduation. Nobody was concerned at all because of the level of athlete she was (now we know better about certain health risks) ... later, when she backed off training so hard, her body finished developing (around early 20's I believe) & she now has a couple kids...

       Just because it's our perception, doesn't mean it's an obvious observation by anybody else!

      Remember that doing anything well is going to take longer than you think!! ~ Masters Group

        I don't mind that the IAAF is taking their time with this.  They are in danger of setting a precedent for what it means to compete as a man or a woman, which will then allow "women" to find alternative ways to optimize their performance.  I'm concerned about what will happen in sports if the average female is disenfranchised to the extent that all the women elite athletes have had surgeries to be more manlike (for bad lack of a better term).  The history of sports involves many athletes having advantages over others, but the physical accomplishment of sports begins to lose its appeal when more and more things that aren't naturally trainable determine who wins.

         

        I've so far been pretty impressed with the IAAF.  The information should not be getting leaked, but there are way too many people involved at this point for leaks or rumors to be kept quiet.  Caster has in many ways been victimized by things that have happened, but don't forget about all the other women who were destroyed by her in competition.  They may well be "victims" here to some extent, too.  If I were Caster, I'd want there to be more sensitivity on the issue.  If I were somebody who lost to her, I would still want that sensitivity for her, but I would also want an objective investigation into the matter.


        HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

          I'll tell you one thing: although I'm not sure about the targets of the comment "giggling like a schoolgirl" (I don't have speakers on my computer, so I can't hear stuff like that, unfortunately), I bet someone was right in the claim that almost everyone on this thread is completely ignorant of this matter. From a point of view of avoiding shame or humiliation, it's kind of too bad that whoever leaked the no-uterus story (if they leaked it, rather than inventing it) weren't a bit more ignorant of the matter.

           

          Fortunately, being rational beings, we can hypothesize and theorize, and this thread has been pretty entertaining to read, and interesting -- especially with the article links. I'm sorry for the poor people who keep being compelled to read this thread even though it offends them, or bores them, or bothers them (presumably the ones who keep complaining that it sucks), but I thank the people posting thoughtful comments and questions.  And I thank the people posting photos. And the people posting links.

           

          I think I was most impressed by the linked article about IAAF's decades long history of dealing with intersexed cases.

          It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.


          Florida

            Mentioned by others and right on, IMO...The Science of Sport website is a pretty solid compendium of information and analysis on this and other issues associated with athletics.  Worth a read.  Certainly has been an eye opener on many levels.

             

            Been raining all morning.  Time to get out and run.


            HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

              Santhi Soundarajan (dq'd by a gender test in 2006) on how terrible it is to fail a gender test.

               

              Myron Genel, MD  on how gender testing is not needed, with the revealing clothes that races wear now, and how they have to be watched peeing for the drug tests: http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TS/OlympicGenderTesting.html

              (Note: her assumption is that gender testing is for catching deliberate cheaters, not for detecting "intersex" people with unfair advantage.)

               

              The 10 Most Shocking Olympic Gender Scandals

              It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

                i just gotta ask....why are men who run really female-like times not accused of being women? 

                'No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everyone on the couch'

                 

                "Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you, 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?'"  - Peter Maher

                 

                "Running long and hard is an ideal antidepressant, since it's hard to run and feel sorry for yourself at the same time. Also, there are those hours of clearheadedness that follow a long run."  -Monte Davis


                HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                  i just gotta ask....why are men who run really female-like times not accused of being women? 

                   I don't think that's quite the appropriate analogy-- more like, why aren't the male racers with big bosoms accused of...

                   

                  never mind

                  It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

                  xor


                    Hey I run in pink and many of my marathon times would qualify me for Boston... as a woman.

                     

                     

                    And when I see a mouse in my house, I have been known to climb on a table and go EEK.

                     


                    HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                      My marathon times would easily qualify me to go to Boston, I mean, if my physical age were 90+, like I feel after I finish them.

                       

                      And if I saw a mouse climbing out of my rice and attacking me, I'd do more than go EEK.

                      It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.


                      HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                        I just saw Caster Semenya easily win her semifinal at the Olympics. That reminded me of the whole intersex mess. I found this fairly recent and quite long article about it -- eventually the author seems to conclude that gender discrimination should be removed altogether, and women compete with men. I gotta say, that sounds an unlikely eventuality -- and I think it would be sad, frankly. It would meaning giving up on the concept of "fastest woman".

                        It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

                        JimR


                          I was wondering if she might be in the Olympics this year but never looked it up.  I'll have to check this out later.

                            This thread still sucks 3 years later.

                            Runners run.

                            xor


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