Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Friday, August 3, 2012

IOC and intersex athletes

In this week's column, the Bay Area Reporter's Roger Brigham has a pot pourri of Olympic-related commentary, all of which is worth reading. But we have a particular fondness for his attack on the IOC gender policy:

Question to International Olympic Committee: Did you even bother to read the Women Sports Foundation's position paper on the participation of intersex athletes in women's sports before you adopted your medieval inquisition policy just weeks before the Olympics?

The IOC published its "Regulations on Female Hyperandrogenism" in June to little immediate fanfare. The regulations were generated as a policy response to the emergence in track of 800-meter runner Caster Semenya of South Africa, a world champion woman with an intersex condition. In brief, the policy, which is available at http://tinyurl.com/7l237pt, rules that women whose testosterone levels are at what are considered normal for males may be ruled by a three-member medical panel ineligible for women's competition.

"Nothing in these regulations is intended to make any determination of sex," the document states, and there is a bitter validity to that statement. The IOC is in effect acknowledging such women are women, but do not fit the IOC's image of what a woman should be and therefore not allowed to compete with their peers.

In an article in the American Journal of Bioethics , Hida Viloria, global chair of Organization Intersex International, and former Spanish hurdles champion Maria Jose Mart'nez-Patino wrote, "It is evident that the new policies do not ensure or address fairness for all. Rather, they were devised to ease social discomfort and appease prejudicial complaints against the women they target. The fact that the IAAF and IOC prioritized these complaints over human rights was enabled by the fact that legal experts in Lausanne confirmed that women with hyperandrogenism lack legal protections."

In fitting Olympic conflict, supporters of Semenya celebrated her selection to carry the national flag for the team during the opening ceremonies, while critics of the IOC were launching an online petition to end gender testing. The petition can be found at http://www.allout.org/olympics. The WSF's position paper on intersex inclusion can be found at http://tinyurl.com/cmb33uw. And a wonderful discussion on the lack of scientific basis and gross prejudice behind the policy is available at http://www.med.stanford.edu/121/2012/Karkazis.html.

Semenya's first heat will be on Wednesday, August 8.

Read in full HERE.

See also this post on our blog.

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