The rejection of Caster Semenya’s appeal by the Court of Arbitration for Sport is deeply disturbing. From our many discussions at reconference and as pointed out by Katrina Karkazis, it is a cause of concern to see how the world still views testosterone, and the false assumptions that people make outside of scientific fact – particularly the widespread belief that the role of testosterone is one solely of a ‘male’ hormone. In fact, Katrina has published an article on the myth of testosterone.
At a time when more allies are coming together to challenge and negate gender and biological stereotypes against bodies, being asked to take medication to ‘reduce’ and change oneself in order to ‘become’ a woman is a serious error of judgment. We must continue to challenge and resist such discriminatory practices and ideas.
reconference speaker Dr. Payoshni Mitra, one of the experts who testified at CAS on behalf of Caster Semenya, shared the following statement:
I was hoping for a favorable verdict and didn’t expect the CAS to give such a verdict. However, it must be noted that all three judges have described the DSD regulation “discriminatory” and also expressed serious doubts about how it will be implemented. We also need to take note that it was a majority decision not a unanimous one. At this point we are discussing our next steps. Caster has been fighting this battle for over a decade now. She has been withstanding severe scrutiny and yet had the resilience, determination and commitment to fight it. Personally, I have been working on this issue for a decade too. Very few people thought we’d win the Dutee (Chand) case back in 2015, but we did. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to work closely with courageous women like Pinki Paramanik, Dutee Chand and Caster Semenya. I draw my strength from them and I can tell you that none of us will ever give up! The fight is still on.