Semenya is not a cheat

IN THE greatest of ironies, Caster Semenya's sin was to succeed.

IN THE greatest of ironies, Caster Semenya's sin was to succeed.

She had lived all her life knowing what her sex and gender were. Her family and community knew too. Then she succeeded and all hell broke loose.

In all of this we have forgotten that sport, by its very nature, favours those whom nature blesses or curses with certain attributes.

African-Americans and others of African descent tend to dominate the 100m sprints.

Sport is the ultimate province of fair inequality.

There are those whose genetic make-up help them run faster, jump higher and throw further than others. To assume that this is dirty is equal to thinking that nature is complicit in a fraud.

So assuming the scurrilous accusations against Caster are true - that she has both male and female organs - it remains important that we ask: "So what?"

It is an important question because it deals with the subliminal message that the Australians are trying to push, which is that she is a cheat.

Caster can only be classified a cheat if it is proven that she knew all along that she had certain genetic make-up that gave her an unfair advantage over others.

Very few of us ever bother to check the exact percentage of male-female chromosomes flowing in our veins.

As with all of us, determinations about our sex are a simple matter of looking between the legs of a newborn baby. After that, the gender construction role starts in earnest.

Whatever the International Association of Athletics Federation's panel of experts decide on Caster, let it be clear that she is not and never was a cheat.

She is a young woman who recognised certain abilities and pursued them. She trained and deferred to the authority and knowledge of those who knew better about sport than she did.

Because of this she is the best 800m runner in the world and nothing and nobody can take that away from her.

It is clear that Athletics South Africa has not told us all they know about the saga. The sooner they start levelling with South Africans on the matter the better for all of us.

Their defensive stance and seeing racists under every rock has contributed to those making the allegations believe they have a righteous cause.

All patriots should rally around her and defend her against the mental war the Australians are trying to wage against her.

Having failed to defeat her on the sports' field they have resorted to literally going below the belt to get some satisfaction.

We repeat what we said on Friday: Caster Semenya is our Golden Girl.