Gender Testing – a Fundamental Violation, Essay Example

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Essay

The differences between men and women have been a long time controversy in the sporting arena. While there are some required testing, most athletic entities do not require gender testing. The reasons for not testing are clear, as it appears to be a violation of an intimate and private part of the athlete’s life. While it is understandable that men posing as women or those that have gender disorders could create an unfair disadvantage, it creates a difficult situation with confidentiality (Schweinbenz & Cronk, 2010). Testing could likely create embarrassment and even present public humiliation.

The androgen test is meant to determine the presence’s of chromosomes and whether or not the participant is truly female. Women are supposed to have two X-chromosomes, while males have an X and Y chromosome. There are medical conditions that causes difference and could lead to further difficulty in the testing procedure. In some cases there may be a medical condition such as androgen insensitivity syndrome where the females has a male Y chromosome, but their body does not respond to male sex hormones, therefore developing female genitalia and internal testes (Geddes, 2009). Because of this condition it does not necessarily give the athlete an advantage, however in areas where testing is required, it could potentially disqualify her from participating. It is a clear violation of civil rights and should not be allowed to disqualify athletes from participating. Granted there should be precautions in place for males posing as female athletes, however invasive testing does not seem like a constitutional answer.

Allowing testing could allow to further violations and even trickle down to young athletes at a local level. This could present issues even at the junior high sporting level, which sends the wrong message to young girls wishing to participate in sports. This type of testing could actually hinder the progress of sports and cause females to avoid playing because of the testing.

References

Geddes, L. (2009). Insight: When is a woman more like a man?. New Scientist, 203(2723), 10.

Schweinbenz, A. N. & Cronk, A. (2010). Femininity control at the Olympic games.

Thirdspace: A Journal of Feminist Theory and Culture. 9(2). Retrieved from http://www.thirdspace.ca/journal/article/viewArticle/schweinbenzcronk/329.

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