Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thurs Afternoon

It’s a day of wind
and quiet thoughtfulness.

What is there to think about? A lot, I think. Just had a surprise encounter with a former boyfriend. The circumstances were formal, and interesting. And, they revealed something about him that I didn’t expect.

Ok. He is positive. HIV positive.

That revelation is always a threat. Knowing that a person is positive. Knowing that one is, or is not, or how they think about it. Why? Because I am human. Because we are all human. And sometimes, many times, we are confronted by our own fears and prejudices. Or remnants of the same.

So, didn’t talk much with the guy. Didn’t share, didn’t ask what has been happening. In truth, I was not tongue tied by the surprise realization. Was too brief an encounter. But it makes me remember myself. Who I am.

And the many ways that we humans exclude others, on the barest, most minimal grounds. So, it is a matter of fact that most HIV positive kuchus don’t want to come out. They don’t want other kuchus to know. Because they are also human beings, and they know that fellow kuchus will stigmatise them just because they are positive. Cant blame only Ugandans. Happens in other countries too. Life is rough, raw and interesting. Kuchu life that is. Always something small, interesting to throw into the fray.

Reminds me of Castor Semenye. A good, interesting, uplifting modern tale of good.

A nation has rallied around her. At the moment when she could have been shamed and thrown to the gossip columns, her country mates have turned the tables. World wide sympathy and an outpouring of love for the young lady has turned the IAAF into the ogre in this story. I laughed when someone sent me a petition to sign, to ‘keep the IAAF out of Caster Semenye’s pants’. Hilarious.

The anger, the outrage is justified.

No, I don’t mean the old catch all phrases, blaming ‘colonialists’ ‘racist’ etc. It is pure and simple a case of trying to throw out a member of the human race from the family of humanity. So, according to the IAAF, she may be too much woman. But most likely she is not man enough. She will not conform to the small labels of man, woman.

But, and this is the beautiful thing, a nation, her nation has come out to rally around her, to say, and demand that that doesn’t matter. Instead of it Caster languishing in bitterness alone, she has known the love of her family, her village, her town, her people. Surely, Caster will be strong whatever the ogre, IAAF decide. And, it will be a difficult decision, if Castor is inter-sex. They will have to stand up and tell us how Castor is neither man enough to be a man, nor woman enough to be a woman. But somewhere in the middle. Do remember that one Indian athlete committed suicide on being called neither man nor woman.

The question that pops into my mind would be, does the IAAF have any inter-sex category where she can compete?

But it is a beautiful story, a fairy story that is still on going, that has yet to get to a conclusion.

Have a wonderful day.


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