Saturday, September 19, 2009

GLAAD Reaching Out To NBC About Problematic Caster Semenya Joke

Posted: 18 Sep 2009 02:26 PM PDT

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We’ve been alerted by many of our supporters about a problematic segment which aired during last night’s Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday.

During the segment, Amy Poehler told this joke:

“Caster Semenya, the champion South African runner whose gender has been called into question, withdrew from a cross country race this past weekend citing an unspecified injury. No word on what the injury is, though it’s rumored she’s suffering from an enlarged penis.”

We are very alarmed that NBC chose to make fun of the young athlete in this dehumanizing manner, particularly given reports that Semenya is on suicide watch after unconfirmed, yet detailed results of her gender testing by the International Association of Athletics Federations were leaked to the Austrailian press, prompting a wave of intrusive, speculative and in many cases sensational media reports about her.

GLAAD is currently reaching out to NBC with serious concerns about this crass and stimatizing joke. We will have more information for you as it becomes available. Please check back for updates.

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