Let Her Run: Why We Stand With Caster Semenya

Caster Semenya is a history maker! She is a South African 800-meter triple world champion and double Olympic gold winner.

In 2019, her body was placed under the microscope after she won the 800-meter race in international competitions. The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) questioned her gender saying that she is too fast for a woman.

Semenya's body produces more testosterone than what has been considered “typical” for women, yet she was born this way. To combat this, the IAAF wants her to take hormone lowering agents or have surgery to lower her testosterone levels.

Everyone should stand with Semenya because the validity of someone’s body should never be questioned. She should not have to alter the way she was naturally born. Instead of policing her body, we all should be celebrating her individuality and accomplishments as a two time Olympic gold champion.

Semenya states that she will “continue to fight for the human rights of female athletes, both on and off the track until we can all run free the way we were born.”

In the meantime, Semenya is training for the 200 meters, the race she can legally compete in because the IAAF banned her from running races between 400 meters to a mile unless she alters her body through medical procedures.

Humans recognize their differences at a young age, which makes everybody unique. Instead of assimilating to what others wanted her to do, Caster Semenya stood up for herself.

Semenya teaches all of us, especially little girls, true humility, leadership, and perseverance. She shows us how to stand up and fight for justice. We are all uniquely designed to do what is made for us, and Caster Semenya is made to run. So let her run!

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