Intersex-ionality: Why Confronting Racism Matters

Our E.D. Hida Viloria has been lobbying, writing, and speaking about the issues of racism, sexism, and interphobia in sporting regulations against intersex athletes since 2009, when black South Africa track star Caster Semenya was banned from competition. Sadly, however, when s/he tried, at an international intersex activism conference, to discuss the fact that women of color are disproportionately targeted by these sporting regulations, the white majority immediately changed the topic.

We believe that it’s tragic when opportunities to educate and support one another, and come together as a community, are lost due to racism. This dynamic is examined in the article, “6 Things Intersex Folks Need to Know About How We Perpetuate Anti-Black Racism”, by intersex activist Pidgeon Pagonis. Part of our mission at OII-USA is to represent and include — not just tokenization, as the article discusses — all members of the intersex community, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, race, ability or class, so we encourage everyone to read this piece, featuring interviews with black intersex activists Lynnell Stefani Long and Saifa Wall.