Caster Semenya is being raped … not in a dark corner of a deserted street; not in the bushes; nor anywhere in secrecy, but right in front of our eyes. She is being raped while the world is watching. Yes, there’s you and I who are speaking against it and there are those who are cheering the barbaric act on, but the rape continues.
Maybe you are, at this point, thinking perhaps this is an extreme view of what is going on, but No! There’s no other way to put it. Corrective rape is a familiar term, especially in Africa where lesbians are seen to be having something wrong with them -something that needs to be corrected. The idea is that something needs to be done to these people to ‘level the playing fields’ in societies and have men as men and make women women.
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), with their new rules which will kick into gear on Wednesday, represents that homophobes … that animal that prowls in the dark of the night targeting those that it feel there’s something wrong with that needs to be corrected within and about them – except that they (IAAF) do it in broad daylight, while the world is watching.
This is so wrong on many levels and cuts across many anomalies that we witness in this world today.
We’ll come back to this rape of Caster. Before then check the following:
“Years of careful investigation had taught me the European powers that had colonized Africa had done more than just beat our people into submission with artillery and rifles. They had done more than simply sown confusion amongst our people by introducing many conflicting versions of the Christian religion amongst the people. They had deliberately so brainwashed our people, that Africans had lost all self-knowledge, self-love, self-respect, self-pride and self-dependency. If you rob a people of all these things you turn them into a race of robots, forever dependent upon you. And even if you stood up and walked away from these people, and said to them that you were giving them back their freedom, they would stand up and follow you wherever you are going for their minds were still your slaves even though their bodies were now free of your chains.”
This is an excerpt from Credo Mutwa’s biography, lamenting the position of Africa and Africans, as well as the treatment they continue to receive from their ‘masters’. The prophet continues to write:
“I believed then as I believe now, that the African has never really gained freedom and independence – which is why our people have not been able to achieve what nations such as India and the tiger Nations of South East Asia, which were once also colonized by the white people as we were, have today achieved. For example, today India is a nuclear power feared and respected by all nations on earth. India is admired for its great culture and its ancient religious philosophies as well as its other philosophies. While Africa is a downtrodden casualty of history forever dependent like a whipped slave upon her former oppressors.
This breaks my heart as a black man. I, who over many years of travelling through my motherland, have discovered that there was a time when we, the black people now held in contempt by many races, were once masters of the world. When we, now derided as a nation of savages incapable of ruling itself, were once the tutors of the early world, I feel great bitterness, when I see how far we have been made to fall. We, whose sons and daughters, once walked tall in the America – not as slaves, but rather as civilizers and rulers. I wept when I found out that we were once the founders of some of the world’s oldest civilizations. We were there in Sumeria, we were there in India, we founded great kingdoms in Cambodia, and the first man to be saluted as emperor of China was one of us, a son of Africa, a black man. Buddha was a black man from Africa, his earliest statues confirm this. Krishna was a black warrior. The goddess Kali, is depicted as an African woman.”
Today, an African track goddess … our track Kali, an African woman is being raped and the world is watching.
The subtext of their actions is that excellence has to have a particular gender, nationality, race, sexual orientation and so on all at once – all of which Caster Semenya seems to lack. Excellence cannot be female; it cannot be South African or African; it cannot be black; it cannot be lesbian; it just cannot be … Caster Semenya.
One of the levels on which this is wrong is exactly this. That, there is a place for Africa and Africans are not allowed of that place. If they perform beyond the perimeters set for Africans, then they need to be looked into and corrective raped, if needs be.
It is also wrong as this perpetuates new forms of colonialism onto Africa. It is a well-documented fact that Africa is a Third World that has a plethora of developmental problems. It cannot compete with Europe and the West who have the most advanced sports science facilities and all the other necessary resources to nurture their talent and compete. Now, if Africa, with all its challenges, still has to have its own athletes medically curtailed what does this mean for this downtrodden continent and its future.
These new rules are also patriarchal in world that has opened these important conversations. These rules, clearly targeting Caster Semenya, suggest that there are boundaries of performances set for women. If you are a woman there are levels of performance you should not reach. If you cross those stereotypical boundaries like Caster Semenya continues to until Wednesday, then you cannot be a woman. There must be a man in you. Like that homophone … that animal that lurks in the dark of the night to ‘corrective rape’ those that it doesn’t understand, Caster, too, has to be ‘corrective raped’ in the laboratory. The setting doesn’t make the rape any less barbaric. It still corrective rape!
The new rules oblige “hyperandrogenic” athletes – those with “differences of sexual development” (DSD) – to lower their testosterone levels if they wish to compete as women. Simply put, modern-day rape!
On Wednesday, when South Africa takes to the polls to vote in the general elections, in a system of governance adopted from the West, the West says from that day, female athletes with high levels of testosterone wishing to compete in events from 400m to a mile must medically limit that level to less than 5 nanomoles per litre (nmol/L). The normal level for women is below 2 nmol/L.
Born and raised in central Argentina, Lionel Messi was diagnosed with a growth hormone deficiency as a child. At age 13, he relocated to Spain to join Barcelona, who agreed to pay for his medical treatment. Out of numerous medical treatments, a star was born – arguably the best the world has ever seen.
But Caster Semenya is not a product of medical interventions. She’s a natural, but that is a sin.
Like Credo Mutwa, this breaks my heart. “This breaks my heart as a black man. I, who over many years of travelling through my motherland, have discovered that there was a time when we, the black people now held in contempt by many races, were once masters of the world.”
Winners are winners. If you can’t beat, join them. But not anymore, if you can’t beat them take them to the lab, according to the IAAF. – By Sipho Kekana @KingKAzania