Caster Semenya ‘is a hermaphrodite’.
Would she be permitted by the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church, or any fundamentalist Christian group, to marry a man in a church, using their traditional liturgies for heterosexual marriage?
Yes. For all of them, she is a woman.
Would she permitted to marry a man in a mosque in accordance with the teachings and traditions of Islam?
Yes. She would be recognised by Islamic scholars and doctors the world over as a woman.
Would she be defined in accordance with the laws and customs of each of the world’s nations as a woman?
Yes. From her birth certificate, her marriage certificate, every contract of employment and on the certificate of her death, she would be identified as being a woman.
Yet the International Association of Athletics Federations no longer recognises her as being female.
And she is certainly not male.
Like the mystery defined at Chalcedon, Caster Semenya is neither fully man nor fully woman. She is not quite ‘in two natures, without confusion’, but she is ‘without division, without separation’. And her humanity is ‘in no way annulled by the union, but rather the characteristics of each nature being preserved and coming together to form one person and subsistence, not as parted or separated into two persons, but one and the same’ woman.
But the IAAF is about to decide whether to strip the teenager of the gold medal she won in Berlin. While this looks unlikely (though then open to legal challenge), she certainly looks certain to be disqualified from competing in future women's races.
Is it not interesting that the aggressive anti-discrimination policies of the UN and the oppressive anti-discrimination directives of the EU – both of which are challenging millennia of religious orthodoxy and centuries of religious liberty – have no application at all in the field of international sports?
Why should distinguishing between genitalia and discrimination on the grounds of chromosomal impulses be denied the State and the Church, but granted to the IAAF?