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Gender Wars

September 2, 2009
Traer Star-Clipper

By Amanda Howard

There has been a huge controversy in the world of sports in the past few days. After winning the 800 meter race in Berlin on August 17, 2009, Caster Semenya was forced to take gender tests because the athletic officials noticed a vast improvement on her race times, also because of her muscular build and deep voice caused them to think she might be a man instead of the women she was claiming to be. She ran so fast that her time has only been qualified with a dozen women in history coupled with Caster's muscular build and deep voice caused officials to question her gender once again.

The athletic officials decided to give a gender test to Caster Semenya. The results came back that she had some male chromosomes. Which brings up the question: should athletes be forced to take tests just because they have shown a great improvement in a short amount of time? Coach Brent Thoren, North Tama High's head football coach says, "the court of the public says yes because people are jumping to the conclusion that athletes are using performance enhancements to improve." Caster Semenya' s story brings up other questions in the world of sports as well. When asking Coach Laube, the head coach of North Tama's High School girls' basketball if he thought that because genetic advantages exist, does that make the playing field unfair?

Coach Laube's response was, "yes, it makes if unfair if is an individual sport. For a team sport coaches use certain people with special advantages to play certain positions in a sport. This occurs more in college or professional sports. College and professional sports are able to draft people with genetic advantages to be able to have a beg advantage on other teams. In high school this doesn't seem to occur as often because they don't draft people."



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