By Onyeka Agwu
Caster Semenya is a South African runner who has been banned by the IAAF from competing with women because she was found to be hyperandrogenic, meaning she has a higher level of testosterone. This whole investigation was based on the opinion of fellow athletes that she looks like a man. As a result, she must either take testosterone decreasing drugs to compete with women or run with men. As of now, Semenya is still fighting the case, not just for herself but for the human rights of all women.
In creating this podcast, I used Anchor and learned how to express myself audibly. It was hard to say all that I wanted to concisely. However, when I completed this piece, I was excited for others to hear what I had to say and hopefully expose the double standard and racism that is still prevalent in our daily lives. As a runner myself who is from Nigeria, it was rare to see a female runner from Africa doing so well. So for the IAAF to work so hard to remove this sliver of hope crushed me.
Meet the Pair
Mentee Onyeka Agwu & Mentor Kelsey Weekman
Onyeka’s Anecdote: As I struggled to find the right words, there she was right next to me reminding me of how great my piece was already. When I began to doubt my work, Kelsey encouraged me by reminding me of how important my story was and how a little can do a lot.
Kelsey’s Anecdote: Onyeka and I are both chronically early to everything. At our first meeting, we sat together for an extra half-hour talking about things, and I didn’t feel the time pass by. I said, “You know, you’re really easy to talk to.” She said the same back to me. I’ve felt that way in each of our meetings—she’s so bright and is so good at opening up to the world. She finds inspiration all around her, easily identifies those she can learn from and portrays them beautifully. As she writes about those people, she’s writing herself into history as well.
Onyeka Agwu is a class of 2020 Girls Write Now mentee based in Bronx, NY.