This week on The Daily Show, South African expat and comedian Trevor Noah shared his views on the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s decision to uphold an IAAF rule that would require fellow South African, athlete Caster Semenya to take testosterone suppressants to compete in the women’s division in her best events – the 800-m and 1600-m races.
Like most South Africans back home, Trevor is outraged by Caster being penalised for her natural hormone levels.
Trevor conceded that “as a South African I might be biased… but this is some bullshit.”
He said: “How is the IAAF going to force a woman to chemically alter her natural hormones because they say she’s too good? It’s not like she’s doping. She didn’t change her body in any way to gain advantage. She just has a natural advantage, which is what happens in all sports.
“People are like “yeah, but she’s hyperandrogenis and that’s not fair”. Yeah, but she didn’t plan that. That’s who she is.”
Trevor pointed out that all the best athletes have a unique genetic advantage – like basketball player Shaq who’s so tall “he can put a ball in a hoop without jumping” and swimmer Michael Phelps whose body produces half as much lactic acid as most people which gives him longer endurance.
“And when he was tested, sports officials said that he was ‘lucky’ that his body works that way,” said Trevor. “That’s literally what they said. They didn’t say ‘you’ve got to change yourself Michael Phelps. You’ve gotta get tired before the race’.”
The South African then joked that it’s like if ice-skater “Tonya Harding hadn’t been born in a trailer park, she wouldn’t have known that hitman”!