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Old 10-24-2014, 01:07 PM
Dendarii Dame is offline
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What about a boy playing on a girls' sports team?


http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports...773_story.html

This article is about a high school boy who wants to play on his school's field hockey team. He's a skilled-enough player to make the varsity, which is not in dispute---he's got a good chance to make the U.S. Men's field hockey team one day. And he's 5'3", and 120 lbs., IIRC, so he's not much bigger than the girls.

So if girls can play Little League, and wrestle on their high school teams (including against boys) and play football and ice hockey on high school teams, it seems to me that this boy should be allowed to play field hockey. I played field hockey myself in high school (not on a good team, if that makes any difference) and I wouldn't have minded playing against him.

What do you think?
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Old 10-24-2014, 01:18 PM
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I think it's fine. At the pre-college level, you're going to have girls that a super-developed and amazing at their sport and not every team can have one. If this kid is a notch above the other players in skill, even because he's male, that's just too bad.

However being that this is a parochial school (I think?) they should be able to make their own rules. Or if the league is all parochial schools. If it were a league of public schools I'd say there's no question - let him play.
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Old 10-24-2014, 02:51 PM
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Boys, especially in late HS, tend to be more explosively athletic than girls. Faster, stronger, larger, etc.

So, when you allow boys to play on the girl's Field Hockey team, unless you artificially restrict access, it's easy to see how the team could become an all-boys team, or at least predominately boys, if the interest were there.

Sure, this boy may not be significantly larger/better than the girls, but that's not how to make the decision, because you're then going to have to tell a different boy that he can't play because he's 6' 190lbs, and he's just too good at the sport.

Since men and boys are more athletically capable, it makes sense for their sports to be 'open' and the girls sports to be 'closed'. Opening the baseball team to girls isn't going to throw the balance of the team/league.
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Old 10-24-2014, 04:47 PM
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The problem with boys on a girls' field hockey team is, they're usually "that much stronger" to the point where the ball is now a weapon - especially from a setup shot like a penalty corner.

This has been a problem ever since Title IX was enacted and somebody realized that it works both ways. I have heard that some states have a rule where an all-girls team can refuse to play a team with any boys on it and it doesn't go into the books as a forfeit.

Meanwhile, I assume most of you have heard the story of the boy whose school didn't have boys' swimming, so he's on his school's girls' swim team, and ended up competing in a Massachusetts regional girls' swim meet, where he broke the meet record (held by a girl, of course) for the 50m freestyle by about a full second - and it goes into the books as the meet record.

California gets around these problems in two ways. First, while a girl can play on a boys' team in a sport where the school doesn't have a girls' team (but, on the other hand, cannot play on one that does), a boy cannot play on a girls' team in a sport without a boys' team unless the girl/boy ratio among athletes exceeds the ratio among students, which is almost never the case in schools that have football. Second, if a girl wants to play on a boys' team in a "non-team" sport (track, cross country, swimming, golf, tennis, badminton, wrestling), she can compete either in the girls' sectional tournament as an individual, or the boys' tournament as part of the team.
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Old 10-24-2014, 10:59 PM
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I suppose this specific case can be adjudicated by people more familiar with the circumstances, but in general boys should not play girls sports. I think people greatly underestimate the talent and physical differences between boys and girls (and men and women) in competitive sports. The US Women's National Soccer team, arguably the best in the world, has lost multiple times to U-15 boys soccer teams. The US Women's hockey team has lost to similarly aged boys. There are a number of reasons for this, but in general, boys shouldn't exploit those differences by playing with girls.
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Old 10-25-2014, 10:10 PM
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I think they should let him have the opportunity, particularly if there is not a similar league for boys where he could get similar experience.

If it turned out that he "plays too rough" or is a source or target for harassment, then the powers that be could reassess things occasionally, but I think it would most likely be fine, and beneficial to all parties.
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Old 07-04-2019, 05:47 AM
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Old 07-04-2019, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Dendarii Dame View Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports...773_story.html

This article is about a high school boy who wants to play on his school's field hockey team. He's a skilled-enough player to make the varsity, which is not in dispute---he's got a good chance to make the U.S. Men's field hockey team one day. And he's 5'3", and 120 lbs., IIRC, so he's not much bigger than the girls.

So if girls can play Little League, and wrestle on their high school teams (including against boys) and play football and ice hockey on high school teams, it seems to me that this boy should be allowed to play field hockey. I played field hockey myself in high school (not on a good team, if that makes any difference) and I wouldn't have minded playing against him.
I'm sorry, but it just is not the same.

Boys are way, way better athletes than girls once puberty hits. Even at 120 pounds, he's going to have a significant edge on most girls and it'll become a bigger edge as he grows. The reason we split males and females in sports is not just random shitting around. We do it so girls and women have a chance. If we had one team for both, the girls wouldn't have a hope in hell in most sports.

The absolutely inevitable result of what you are proposing will be that no girls will play field hockey. In almost any high school of any significant size, were the positions on the field hockey team open to both boys and girls, the number of girls who would be good enough to be on the squad, given fair and honest tryouts, would be zero.

In the VERY rare cases where a girl is good enough post-puberty to compete with boys well enough to get on a boys' team, we aren't concerned because, frankly, it's just not going to make any sort of difference to men's sport. The number of girls that good is trivial; a good high school boys' hockey team would beat the U.S. Olympic women's team. A rare, rare exception isn't a challenge to the fairness of sport.
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Old 07-04-2019, 01:24 PM
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Generally speaking, the male will have an unfair advantage, playing in women's sports.

And that's the way it has to be. It's time for society to take its unfair lumps. Equality is a double-edged sword.
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Old 07-04-2019, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Dendarii Dame View Post
So if girls can play Little League, and wrestle on their high school teams (including against boys) and play football and ice hockey on high school teams, it seems to me that this boy should be allowed to play field hockey.
I'll agree with others in saying that I don't think this works. By high school (indeed, after puberty) the differences between males and females require a special female-only category to avoid having 99% male participation in all top teams in essentially all sports (even including chess).

It's clear (to me at least) that there should not be a "boys only" category: if a girl is able to make any team on merit, she should absolutely be allowed to. But there should certainly be a "two X chromosomes" category - without this, girls are effectively excluded.
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Old 07-04-2019, 05:35 PM
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I think of it the same as having fully-grown adults play on a high school team. That would be wrong for all of the same reasons.
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:07 PM
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Those advocating that boys not be allowed to play on a girls team because of the genetics involved, what about those of us boys at a disadvantage because of genetics? Should we get our own league, too?

I totally agree that almost no girls have a chance of playing against boys in most sports. That is also true for a significant portion of boys, but I don't hear anyone advocating that the high percentage of boys who are equally genetically at a disadvantage be given their own league. Why?
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by cmosdes View Post
Those advocating that boys not be allowed to play on a girls team because of the genetics involved, what about those of us boys at a disadvantage because of genetics? Should we get our own league, too?

I totally agree that almost no girls have a chance of playing against boys in most sports. That is also true for a significant portion of boys, but I don't hear anyone advocating that the high percentage of boys who are equally genetically at a disadvantage be given their own league. Why?
Because the top of the genetic curve for girls is down at the level of very good for the boys.
List of United States high school national records in track and field

Girls 3200m 9:47
Boys 3200m 8:29

The girls' time wouldn't win many local dual meets on the boys' side.

Last edited by running coach; 07-10-2019 at 07:29 PM.
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Old 07-10-2019, 08:11 PM
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Generally speaking, the male will have an unfair advantage, playing in women's sports.

And that's the way it has to be. It's time for society to take its unfair lumps. Equality is a double-edged sword.
Absolutely, if you remove reason and make policy based on churlishness.
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Old 07-10-2019, 08:29 PM
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Because the top of the genetic curve for girls is down at the level of very good for the boys.
List of United States high school national records in track and field

Girls 3200m 9:47
Boys 3200m 8:29

The girls' time wouldn't win many local dual meets on the boys' side.
A very large percentage of boys would never win, never be competitive nor even get the opportunity to compete because of genetics. Girls get a different league or competition because of genetics.

Girls are at a genetic disadvantage, just like most boys. Because we classify their genetic disadvantage differently, they get a league of their own and opportunities to compete. Boys with a genetic disadvantage are patted on the head and told to go find a nice chess game.

It isn't just a matter of training, either. You can't train to be 5'10".

This is strictly a philosophical discussion. The VAST majority of us, boys and girls, face the reality we will never be competitive nor be allowed to even try in most activities. But no one is advocating that the very large majority of us that are excluded from these things are harmed because of that. Why are girls singled out as needing that availability but these rest of the genetically inferior of us aren't?
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:38 PM
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A very large percentage of boys would never win, never be competitive nor even get the opportunity to compete because of genetics. Girls get a different league or competition because of genetics.

Girls are at a genetic disadvantage, just like most boys. Because we classify their genetic disadvantage differently, they get a league of their own and opportunities to compete. Boys with a genetic disadvantage are patted on the head and told to go find a nice chess game.

It isn't just a matter of training, either. You can't train to be 5'10".

This is strictly a philosophical discussion. The VAST majority of us, boys and girls, face the reality we will never be competitive nor be allowed to even try in most activities. But no one is advocating that the very large majority of us that are excluded from these things are harmed because of that. Why are girls singled out as needing that availability but these rest of the genetically inferior of us aren't?
Don’t forget that men’s boxing and wrestling have weight classes. It’s done for similar reasons; safety, making fights more satisfying for spectators, etc.
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:46 PM
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The problem with boys on a girls' field hockey team is, they're usually "that much stronger" to the point where the ball is now a weapon - especially from a setup shot like a penalty corner.
How is this not just as much of a problem for the guys? Do they get to wear armor?
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:02 PM
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A very large percentage of boys would never win, never be competitive nor even get the opportunity to compete because of genetics. Girls get a different league or competition because of genetics.

Girls are at a genetic disadvantage, just like most boys. Because we classify their genetic disadvantage differently, they get a league of their own and opportunities to compete. Boys with a genetic disadvantage are patted on the head and told to go find a nice chess game.

It isn't just a matter of training, either. You can't train to be 5'10".

This is strictly a philosophical discussion. The VAST majority of us, boys and girls, face the reality we will never be competitive nor be allowed to even try in most activities. But no one is advocating that the very large majority of us that are excluded from these things are harmed because of that. Why are girls singled out as needing that availability but these rest of the genetically inferior of us aren't?
That’s not really true though. There are a lot of recreational and competitive leagues in a variety of sports that those who lack the genetics for the top tier leagues can participate in.
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Old 07-10-2019, 11:03 PM
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That’s not really true though. There are a lot of recreational and competitive leagues in a variety of sports that those who lack the genetics for the top tier leagues can participate in.
Title IX has mandated that girls be given as many opportunities as boys at a collegiate level. There are not the legally mandated opportunities for those who lack the genetics to compete at a collegiate level. Unless those genetics are related to the 23rd chromosome pair.

Why don't you tell the girls the same thing you just said here?
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Old 07-11-2019, 08:41 AM
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Those advocating that boys not be allowed to play on a girls team because of the genetics involved, what about those of us boys at a disadvantage because of genetics? Should we get our own league, too?
No one's stopping you.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:07 AM
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Equality is a double-edged sword.
Why does equality have to be a sword? I say let equality be a slice of pie, served à la mode or plain.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:22 AM
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No one's stopping you.
And no one is stopping girls from forming their own leagues to play in if they can't make a boys' collegiate team. However, Title IX says schools MUST provide equal opportunities for the girls but does not provide equal opportunities for the rest of us genetically disadvantaged folks. Why is one type of genetic disadvantage given preference over others?
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:51 AM
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And no one is stopping girls from forming their own leagues to play in if they can't make a boys' collegiate team.
But they did form a team. The OP is talking about a girls' field hockey team (in high school, not college.) And now a boy wants to play on it. So when the boys dominate that team, do the girls form another team? Great. And then do the boys get to play on that one, too?

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However, Title IX says schools MUST provide equal opportunities for the girls but does not provide equal opportunities for the rest of us genetically disadvantaged folks. Why is one type of genetic disadvantage given preference over others?
Because women are massively, massively discriminated against and have been for millennia, and if they do not have their own sports teams will not be able to play organized sports. Because there is a clear societal benefit to Title IX. Because there is no other genetic demarcation remotely as clear, bright and connected to societal privilege and disadvantage in sports as the line between men and women.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:51 AM
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And no one is stopping girls from forming their own leagues to play in if they can't make a boys' collegiate team. However, Title IX says schools MUST provide equal opportunities for the girls but does not provide equal opportunities for the rest of us genetically disadvantaged folks. Why is one type of genetic disadvantage given preference over others?
Because a long line of people who shared that particular type of genetic disadvantage spent a century promoting the rights and privileges of those people. It seems your short, wheezy, uncoordinated forerunners failed you. For what it's worth, even the most fumble-fingered men were voting in this country long before the ladies.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:50 AM
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And no one is stopping girls from forming their own leagues to play in if they can't make a boys' collegiate team. However, Title IX says schools MUST provide equal opportunities for the girls but does not provide equal opportunities for the rest of us genetically disadvantaged folks. Why is one type of genetic disadvantage given preference over others?
In all sincerity, events like the Special Olympics, Paralympics, and Deaflympics were organized to allow people who are disadvantaged a chance to compete athletically against their peers. And I previously mentioned weight classes in certain sports (not to mention leagues restricted to certain age groups). Gender is not the only way that sports have been segregated, and women aren’t the only “protected class” in athletics.
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:04 PM
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In all sincerity, events like the Special Olympics, Paralympics, and Deaflympics were organized to allow people who are disadvantaged a chance to compete athletically against their peers. And I previously mentioned weight classes in certain sports (not to mention leagues restricted to certain age groups). Gender is not the only way that sports have been segregated, and women aren’t the only “protected class” in athletics.
Sure. Show me where colleges are require, by law, to provide classes of groups opportunities to compete like Title IX provides for women. As was pointed out above, when these groups wanted to compete, they went off and formed their own competitions. Great! But it wasn't legally mandated.

Women are the only "protected class" in athletics when it comes to rule of law.
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:05 PM
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Because a long line of people who shared that particular type of genetic disadvantage spent a century promoting the rights and privileges of those people. It seems your short, wheezy, uncoordinated forerunners failed you. For what it's worth, even the most fumble-fingered men were voting in this country long before the ladies.
Exactly what does voting have to do with opportunities in athletics?
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:20 PM
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But they did form a team. The OP is talking about a girls' field hockey team (in high school, not college.) And now a boy wants to play on it. So when the boys dominate that team, do the girls form another team? Great. And then do the boys get to play on that one, too?
Girls were never excluded from playing on the other high school teams. They were free to try out for them, just like the vast majority of boys that weren't genetically gifted enough to make the team. But someone, somewhere, decided that girls need athletic opportunities. Why are only the girls, based solely on genetic makeup, thought to need those opportunities but boys with an equal genetic disadvantage are not?


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Because women are massively, massively discriminated against and have been for millennia, and if they do not have their own sports teams will not be able to play organized sports. Because there is a clear societal benefit to Title IX. Because there is no other genetic demarcation remotely as clear, bright and connected to societal privilege and disadvantage in sports as the line between men and women.
The vast majority of us have been excluded from these competitions and sports opportunities and yet society and civilization have managed to go on. If it is better for society as a whole for one genetically disadvantaged group, why wouldn't it be better if others were given the opportunity?
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:48 PM
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Girls were never excluded from playing on the other high school teams.
That is plainly false. In fact, in the past, it was common for girls to be officially or unofficially prohibited from athletics.

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Why are only the girls, based solely on genetic makeup, thought to need those opportunities but boys with an equal genetic disadvantage are not?
The primary reasons, as I have already said but will explain further, is that girls are at far more of a genetic disadvantage, have had huge social and cultural disadvantages that no boy ever has, and that the distinction is the easiest distinction one can possible make on a genetic basis.

There is simply no comparable "Genetic disadvantage" a boy can have, unless we are actually getting into the realm of significant disability (which is why we do have divisions for people with disabilities.)

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The vast majority of us have been excluded from these competitions and sports opportunities...
Wow, really? The VAST MAJORITY of young men can't play organized sports? Well, that's just bullshit, and you know it is. Of course that is false. In fact, the majority of boys DO play organized sports at some point - to be honest, I am hard pressed to name very many guys I knew who have not - and it is absolutely false to state that all the ones who have not were "excluded," as opposed to simply being disinterested. (Indeed, the one friend I have who never played organized sports I am aware of is actually in very good shape. It just never was his thing as a kid.)
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:49 PM
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Girls were never excluded from playing on the other high school teams. They were free to try out for them, just like the vast majority of boys that weren't genetically gifted enough to make the team. But someone, somewhere, decided that girls need athletic opportunities. Why are only the girls, based solely on genetic makeup, thought to need those opportunities but boys with an equal genetic disadvantage are not?
Schools will often have many levels of the same sport. There may be varsity, jr varsity, and maybe jr varsity A, B, C,... depending on popularity. It's not unusual for schools in Texas to have 3-4 football teams for different levels of abilities. Some of the sports (e.g. cross country) may be no-cut, which means anyone can be on the team almost regardless of ability. So just because someone can't be on the varsity football team doesn't mean they can't play sports. Not everyone will get to play on their sport of choice regardless of ability. Because of budget reasons, not every sport can support all participants. But if you were in a school where everyone wanted to play football, there likely would be many jr varsity teams and the lower level ones might be no-cut where anyone could be on the team.
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:00 PM
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I don't think this is ambiguous at all. Title IX says:

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No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
This has been interpreted and implemented as essentially saying that schools need to give girls an equal opportunity to play sports as boys. Not that there's a sport-by-sport equivalence.

Specifically:
Quote:
With regard to Title IX’s participation requirements, a school can meet the standard via three independent tests. The first test is a mathematical safe harbor. If the school offers athletic participation opportunities (number of individual athlete participation slots, not numbers of teams) proportional to the numbers of males and females in the general student body, the school meets the participation standard. If the school does not meet this mathematical test, it may be deemed in compliance if it can (1) demonstrate consistent expansion of opportunities for the underrepresented gender over time or (2) show that the athletic program fully met the interests and abilities of the underrepresented gender.
Emphasis mine. That last point tends to be the critical point for most schools in the US. The rules are different as they apply to the "underrepresented" gender. Meaning that boys do not get the special privilege to play sports designated for women. It would be obviously anti-competitive and dangerous but you simply can't point to "equal treatment" as an excuse, the statute is pretty well established here.

Think about this from a practical standpoint. A women's field hockey team with 10 boys will almost always beat a team with all girls. Teams will recruit boys to compete. Over time every team will become a all boys team in practice simply due to competition. Allowing boys to play girls sports has the same effect as converting that sport to a men's sport and removing "equal participation".

This has been tried in court and failed every time.
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:06 PM
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Think about this from a practical standpoint. A women's field hockey team with 10 boys will almost always beat a team with all girls. Teams will recruit boys to compete. Over time every team will become a all boys team in practice simply due to competition. Allowing boys to play girls sports has the same effect as converting that sport to a men's sport and removing "equal participation".
This would especially happen in schools in which the boys version of a sport was cut. Sometimes in sports which might traditionally have boys and girls versions (e.g. swimming), the school will only have a girls version because of budget reasons or whatever. If boys were allowed on the girls swim team, then it would likely become a team with almost all boys.
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:59 PM
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The problem with boys on a girls' field hockey team is, they're usually "that much stronger" to the point where the ball is now a weapon - especially from a setup shot like a penalty corner.
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How is this not just as much of a problem for the guys? Do they get to wear armor?
IMO, the girls are more "susceptible" to an injury from a really hard shot than the boys are.

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California gets around these problems in two ways.
Second, if a girl wants to play on a boys' team in a "non-team" sport (track, cross country, swimming, golf, tennis, badminton, wrestling), she can compete either in the girls' sectional tournament as an individual, or the boys' tournament as part of the team.
Strangely enough, Massachusetts, which let the boy compete in a girls' meet, did this in late 2017 when a girl, who went to a school without a girls' golf team, played on her school's boys' team, and ended up "winning" a regional individual championship, only to be told that she wasn't eligible for the individual title as she could only compete in the girls' state golf tournament if she wanted to compete as an individual rather than as part of her school's team.
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Old 07-11-2019, 02:26 PM
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That is plainly false. In fact, in the past, it was common for girls to be officially or unofficially prohibited from athletics.
If there is an issue that girls aren't allowed to play on boys' teams that are due to policy, change the policy. However, most of the arguments here are about giving girls their own leagues because they can't physically compete against the best of the boys. That same limitation applies to the vast majority of boys.

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The primary reasons, as I have already said but will explain further, is that girls are at far more of a genetic disadvantage, have had huge social and cultural disadvantages that no boy ever has, and that the distinction is the easiest distinction one can possible make on a genetic basis.
Two different issues. Genetic disadvantage or social and cultural disadvantages. Title IX didn't say give girls an opportunity to make the boys' teams, it said you have to have as many girls playing sports as you have boys (percentage wise). If the issue is cultural, just legislate that girls must be allowed to try out for boys' teams. If the claim is that they don't stand a chance because of genetic disadvantages, well, welcome to world where most of the rest of us reside.

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There is simply no comparable "Genetic disadvantage" a boy can have, unless we are actually getting into the realm of significant disability (which is why we do have divisions for people with disabilities.)
Genetics, not desire, not opportunity, not training, are what keep me from being able to compete. How is that not comparable? I don't care how hard I train, I will never be able to compete against the best athletes. So I have the same genetic disadvantage as any girl. The genetic disadvantage is completely comparable.

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Wow, really? The VAST MAJORITY of young men can't play organized sports? Well, that's just bullshit, and you know it is. Of course that is false. In fact, the majority of boys DO play organized sports at some point - to be honest, I am hard pressed to name very many guys I knew who have not - and it is absolutely false to state that all the ones who have not were "excluded," as opposed to simply being disinterested. (Indeed, the one friend I have who never played organized sports I am aware of is actually in very good shape. It just never was his thing as a kid.)
The majority of boys play organized sports at some point? Sure. As do the majority of girls. I'd be hard pressed to name any girl I knew growing up who didn't play sports. I grew up in the 70s. In high school is where things start to separate. At that level the number of boys I knew playing sports dwindled, significantly. As it did with girls. By college, the number playing for the college team was likely in the single digit percentages. I didn't know a single male playing on any collegiate teams in any of the three colleges I attended. So yes, the VAST majority of men can't play organized sports once you get beyond grade school.
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Old 07-11-2019, 02:30 PM
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Schools will often have many levels of the same sport. There may be varsity, jr varsity, and maybe jr varsity A, B, C,... depending on popularity. It's not unusual for schools in Texas to have 3-4 football teams for different levels of abilities. Some of the sports (e.g. cross country) may be no-cut, which means anyone can be on the team almost regardless of ability. So just because someone can't be on the varsity football team doesn't mean they can't play sports. Not everyone will get to play on their sport of choice regardless of ability. Because of budget reasons, not every sport can support all participants. But if you were in a school where everyone wanted to play football, there likely would be many jr varsity teams and the lower level ones might be no-cut where anyone could be on the team.
Based on this argument, there shouldn't need to be a special team just for girls. If they can't make the varsity football team doesn't mean they can't play sports. Maybe they can go play on the jr varsity team where there might be no-cuts.
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Old 07-11-2019, 02:36 PM
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Based on this argument, there shouldn't need to be a special team just for girls. If they can't make the varsity football team doesn't mean they can't play sports. Maybe they can go play on the jr varsity team where there might be no-cuts.
You'd still have inequality because there are typically quality and funding differences at the different level. The varsity sport will have the best coaches, uniforms, transportation, etc. Jr varsity will be lesser quality. If there was just one sport called "Swimming", the varsity would have all boys, jr varsity would be mostly boys, and jr varsity B might be 50/50. There would not be an option for highly competitive girls to have the same experience as the highly competitive boys. With a varsity version for both boys and girls, each gender gets to have an equal experience of top-level competition.
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Old 07-11-2019, 02:47 PM
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Think about this from a practical standpoint. A women's field hockey team with 10 boys will almost always beat a team with all girls. Teams will recruit boys to compete. Over time every team will become a all boys team in practice simply due to competition. Allowing boys to play girls sports has the same effect as converting that sport to a men's sport and removing "equal participation".
Yes, you are exactly right which is why it is great we have leagues dedicated to only women. It is important we recognize that having opportunities to compete like that are good for the participants, even if they aren't the best of the best.
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Old 07-11-2019, 02:51 PM
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You'd still have inequality because there are typically quality and funding differences at the different level. The varsity sport will have the best coaches, uniforms, transportation, etc. Jr varsity will be lesser quality. If there was just one sport called "Swimming", the varsity would have all boys, jr varsity would be mostly boys, and jr varsity B might be 50/50. There would not be an option for highly competitive girls to have the same experience as the highly competitive boys. With a varsity version for both boys and girls, each gender gets to have an equal experience of top-level competition.
Which also means the boys who aren't good enough to make the varsity team are similarly working with inferior coaches, facilities and such. For a football team, a few dozen boys out of hundreds get the best opportunity, whereas the rest are given an inferior one. Creating a girls only option allows for some girls to compete at that level, but that decision was made because the girls can't compete against the best boys. Which is also true for most of the rest of the boys.
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Old 07-11-2019, 03:08 PM
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Which also means the boys who aren't good enough to make the varsity team are similarly working with inferior coaches, facilities and such. For a football team, a few dozen boys out of hundreds get the best opportunity, whereas the rest are given an inferior one. Creating a girls only option allows for some girls to compete at that level, but that decision was made because the girls can't compete against the best boys. Which is also true for most of the rest of the boys.
One difference is that the non-competitive boys typically will have imperfect skills even if they can beat the top girls. Their greater strength gives them an inherent advantage that a girl can't overcome regardless of skill. Like in swimming, the difference between boys and girls is almost totally due to muscular development. The top boys and girls will both have excellent technique, but the boys are almost always stronger. They boys are not better swimmers, they are stronger swimmers. The jv boy swimmers may be faster than varsity girls, but they are not better swimmers. Their advantage comes from being naturally stronger and having hearts that can push more blood. The highly competitive girls need coaches who can spot small changes that give .01 second improvements. That kind of coaching would not be as relevant at the jv level. The jv boys would not need the same level of coaching as the varsity boys. Lumping top girls with jv boys would not be useful to either group as they need different coaching.
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Old 07-11-2019, 03:34 PM
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One difference is that the non-competitive boys typically will have imperfect skills even if they can beat the top girls. Their greater strength gives them an inherent advantage that a girl can't overcome regardless of skill. Like in swimming, the difference between boys and girls is almost totally due to muscular development. The top boys and girls will both have excellent technique, but the boys are almost always stronger. They boys are not better swimmers, they are stronger swimmers. The jv boy swimmers may be faster than varsity girls, but they are not better swimmers. Their advantage comes from being naturally stronger and having hearts that can push more blood. The highly competitive girls need coaches who can spot small changes that give .01 second improvements. That kind of coaching would not be as relevant at the jv level. The jv boys would not need the same level of coaching as the varsity boys. Lumping top girls with jv boys would not be useful to either group as they need different coaching.
You say, "their greater strength" as if every boy has greater strength than every girl. That just isn't true. Even if it were true, only the top boys get to compete at the varsity level because they are stronger than the boys at the lower levels. There are going to be boys with better skill who can't make varsity because they aren't as strong as some of the boys who can overcome the skill deficit with strength. So here again, there are boys who are just as left out of sports as any girls. But we don't bat an eye at the boys whose genetics keep them from those highest levels. We tell them to go find something else to do and don't think twice about it.
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Old 07-11-2019, 03:37 PM
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One reason why there aren’t special teams for boys with lesser athletic ability is this... How would that even work? Do you have a “kind of fast” team, a “kind of slow” team, and a “really slow” team? What about the “weak muscle” team, the “no depth perception” team, the “constantly out of breath” team? There is no clear way to divide up competition for boys who are of varying athletic ability due to genetic factors.

Boys and girls, that’s easy to divide up though. And weight classes for certain sports. If it’s simple to make such a delineation, it’s more likely to happen.

Another thing to remember is that girls who are poor athletes are unlikely to qualify for girls’ teams. I don’t know why there is this focus on boys that can’t compete physically being discriminated against in favor of girls. The girls have the same obstacles to overcome.
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:25 PM
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One reason why there aren’t special teams for boys with lesser athletic ability is this... How would that even work? Do you have a “kind of fast” team, a “kind of slow” team, and a “really slow” team? What about the “weak muscle” team, the “no depth perception” team, the “constantly out of breath” team? There is no clear way to divide up competition for boys who are of varying athletic ability due to genetic factors.

Boys and girls, that’s easy to divide up though. And weight classes for certain sports. If it’s simple to make such a delineation, it’s more likely to happen.

Another thing to remember is that girls who are poor athletes are unlikely to qualify for girls’ teams. I don’t know why there is this focus on boys that can’t compete physically being discriminated against in favor of girls. The girls have the same obstacles to overcome.
Of course it doesn't work. It is a continuous spectrum of abilities and genetics that would make it impossible to create delineations between. Using sex is a great way to help divide different genetics as was pointed out earlier. It is about the best we can do.

You make my point when you say there are girls who are poor athletes unlikely to qualify for girls' teams. But there aren't legal obligations to setup special leagues and teams and competitions for those girls simply because they can't qualify. Because of Title IX, special leagues and teams were setup so girls could compete because there is no way they could compete against the boys. Apparently it is imperative that some people with a genetic disadvantage be given these opportunities but for others it apparently isn't that important. That goes for both boys and girls.

I don't know of a better way to divide things to give more opportunities to all who want them. It is great we give women these opportunities. We should try to do more of that. But if a girl can't compete against the boys and has to find other avenues, well, welcome to the world in which many of us somehow manage to get along just fine.

I just cannot summon an ounce of concern when people are excluded from competitions because of genetics. It is a reality most of us face, including boys.
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:29 PM
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You say, "their greater strength" as if every boy has greater strength than every girl. That just isn't true. Even if it were true, only the top boys get to compete at the varsity level because they are stronger than the boys at the lower levels. There are going to be boys with better skill who can't make varsity because they aren't as strong as some of the boys who can overcome the skill deficit with strength. So here again, there are boys who are just as left out of sports as any girls. But we don't bat an eye at the boys whose genetics keep them from those highest levels. We tell them to go find something else to do and don't think twice about it.
Even if there were no girl sports, this is still the case. In football this exact situation happens since there is only boys football programs. There are only so many spots for varsity football. Boys who don't make the cut for varsity play in one of the jr varsity teams. If the non-varsity boys were allowed to play for the varsity girls teams, then the varsity girls teams would be almost all boys. So there'd essentially be two varsity boys teams and girls would be only on the lower-level teams.

And it's not the case that lesser-skilled boys are shut out from sports. They may not be able to play on the highest-level team, but that would happen regardless of whether there were girls teams or not. Even at an all-boys school, not every boy will be able to play on whatever team at whatever level they like.

While I certainly agree that resources spent towards girls teams means that fewer boys can play sports, I don't see that as a bad thing. Many girls are highly competitive and sports are a great outlet for them. Without an artificial balancing of opportunity, girls as a gender were effectively cut out of sports. They would have just a few sports and they would be poorly funded. The personal development benefits that come from being on a highly competitive team did not exist for many girls before things like Title IX. And now that we have had a generation of girls going through competitive programs, we are seeing the emergence of first-rate professional women sports like basketball and soccer. Without girl-only teams, that level of talent would not have been developed.
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Old 07-11-2019, 06:13 PM
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Even if there were no girl sports, this is still the case. In football this exact situation happens since there is only boys football programs. There are only so many spots for varsity football. Boys who don't make the cut for varsity play in one of the jr varsity teams. If the non-varsity boys were allowed to play for the varsity girls teams, then the varsity girls teams would be almost all boys. So there'd essentially be two varsity boys teams and girls would be only on the lower-level teams.

And it's not the case that lesser-skilled boys are shut out from sports. They may not be able to play on the highest-level team, but that would happen regardless of whether there were girls teams or not. Even at an all-boys school, not every boy will be able to play on whatever team at whatever level they like.

While I certainly agree that resources spent towards girls teams means that fewer boys can play sports, I don't see that as a bad thing. Many girls are highly competitive and sports are a great outlet for them. Without an artificial balancing of opportunity, girls as a gender were effectively cut out of sports. They would have just a few sports and they would be poorly funded. The personal development benefits that come from being on a highly competitive team did not exist for many girls before things like Title IX. And now that we have had a generation of girls going through competitive programs, we are seeing the emergence of first-rate professional women sports like basketball and soccer. Without girl-only teams, that level of talent would not have been developed.
You expressed no concern that boys at an all boys school who aren't good enough for the highest levels don't get to play. Most people don't. Yet to many it is important girls be allowed to play. Every justification that is given to provide girls their own leagues and opportunities where they don't have to compete against boys can be used to justify forming leagues for boys with genetic disadvantages. Some of those boys are competitive and sports would be a great outlet. Without artificial balances boys with genetic disadvantages would be cut out. They would have few sports and would be poorly funded.

None of these justifications for providing opportunities to girls elude me. But for whatever reason, people don't seem to feel those sames rationales apply to boys.

I think it is fair to say, "All that does apply to boys, but it is impossible to create the opportunities for boys of all genetics in practicality", that'd be fair. But that is never the argument. The argument is always, "Girls can't compete against boys because of genetics" and I think that is a weak argument for the reasons I've been saying.
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Old 07-12-2019, 02:23 AM
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IMO, the girls are more "susceptible" to an injury from a really hard shot than the boys are.
I'm having trouble with that statement. Is there any physiological reason why a girl would be more susceptible to an impact injury?
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Old 07-12-2019, 07:47 AM
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I'm having trouble with that statement. Is there any physiological reason why a girl would be more susceptible to an impact injury?
Probably only in that, at high school level, "typical" boys who are athletes tend to be bigger/heavier than "typical" girls that are.

If you want true "equality" in sports, it's simple; all sports are co-ed, and set up so that boys and girls compete separately. In, say, basketball, one sex plays the first half, and the other sex plays the second half ("Which plays which?" Have the home team decide) - I would say "alternate quarters," but I am under the impression that having a team play the first quarter, sit out the second, and play the third (or second, third, fourth) is just asking for any number of pulled muscles.
It is easier to do in most "individual" sports like track & field, swimming, or cross country (and aren't most high school varsity track meets simultaneous boys' and girls' meets anyway?); have everybody compete "normally" and then add up the boys' and girls' points.
For tennis, my idea is, start with three doubles sets - one boys' doubles, one girls' doubles, and one mixed doubles; then, each team has three boys' singles players that each play a set against each opponent (i.e. each player plays three sets), and three girls' singles players that also each play a set against each opponent. Best of 21 sets wins.
"But what about football?" Wait for enough mothers to say, "I'm not letting my son play football!"; problem solved.
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Old 07-12-2019, 08:44 AM
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It is easier to do in most "individual" sports like track & field, swimming, or cross country (and aren't most high school varsity track meets simultaneous boys' and girls' meets anyway?); have everybody compete "normally" and then add up the boys' and girls' points.
The meets are still scored separately as boys vs. boys/girls vs. girls. There are occasionally invitational meets where the points are added together for a mixed team championship but the actual competition is still gender divided.
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Old 07-12-2019, 09:00 AM
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Exactly what does voting have to do with opportunities in athletics?
Nothing, other than a history of discrimination has led one of these groups to call attention to itself and demand unique opportunities. If the unathletic care about having their own athletic opportunities, the onus is on them to make the case for it. Usually, at the college level at least, this comes in the form of club sports.

Last edited by Boozahol Squid, P.I.; 07-12-2019 at 09:01 AM.
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Old 07-12-2019, 09:59 AM
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Probably only in that, at high school level, "typical" boys who are athletes tend to be bigger/heavier than "typical" girls that are.
Sure, I know that but are they less resilient to injury from a ball struck by a boy than a boy would be? I can't think why they would be and if they aren't then the risk of injury in a mixed sport is not worse than in boys v boys game.
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Old 07-12-2019, 10:06 AM
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cmosdes, I'm one of those guys who have those genetic disadvantages you mention. There are a lot of women who are physically stronger than me. But one obvious practical problem with a league just for guys like me is, how do you identify us? If you have any sort of competitive tryouts, then the teams will be full of the guys who have genetic disadvantages, but who practiced and worked out harder, or who had other genetic advantages that compensate for the disadvantages, or whatever. And how do you tell the difference between one of those guys and the guys at the lower end of those who don't have such disadvantages?

With sex, it's easy, because there are a whole lot of easily-detectable traits that go along with the traits that disadvantage women in sports (at least, usually, and those cases where the correlations aren't perfect do indeed cause headaches for things like sex-segregated sports). If you have a vagina, it's generally assumed that you also have a package of genes that make you physically weaker. But there's no obvious marker that I have the genes I do. You'd have to isolate the specific genes and run DNA tests, and even then, there'd be other genes with similar effects that you'd be missing.
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