Title IX

My biggest beef with Title IX is that it presupposes equal opportunity where there is not equal interest. In general, more men want to play sports than women. It’s great to encourage more women to play sports, but I would very much like to see how many women’s sports teams were created under Title IX vs. how many men’s sprots teams were dropped.

Just this past summer at Iowa State I believe (maybe someone else is more familiar with this story), they wanted to get rid of men’s and women’s tennis to save money. The teams protested, and threated to sue, so the school decided to let only the women’s team stay.

It’s the same thing at Syracuse. They have no baseball team, and they just got rid of wrestling. Yet they very recently added women’s soccer, women’s lacrosse, and softball.

Sorry. It was Northern Iowa, and it also involved the swim teams.


That’s a good, solid, logical position that unfortunately has no chance in hell of being implemented. To continue the hijack, the colleges should spin off their football and basketball teams and operate them on a sink or swim for-profit basis, with the players getting paid in cash rather than on the scholarship/room/board barter system - and make all other teams non-scholarship “club sports”, where the participants pay the costs.

(bolding mine)

And there’s where you run into trouble. Women’s groups (many, if not most, minority groups, as well) frequently consider lack of result to be the same as lack of opportunity. If 20% of men make the team, and only 5% of women, then by golly, thar’s discrimination in dem dere hills! Heck, look at the outrage over the lack of women in high-tech fields. It doesn’t matter that women tend to be less interested in, say, computer programming than men - there’s not enough women, and we better get some legislation to remedy this blatant example of sexism! That’s why programs like Title IX and Affirmative Action have an unfortunate tendency to quickly degenerate into simple quota systems.

That might be a tenable position, except for the fact that intercollegiate sports go a long way towards raising interest in a school. The team becomes popular, and that means that more people will want to go there, athlete or not. I knew lots of people in high school that wanted to attend UC Berkeley because of they thought the Cal Bears were so cool. It may be a stupid method for choosing your college, but that doesn’t make it any less of factor, and schools know this.

If the success of a sports team results in more students, and thus more money for the school, it’s in everybody’s interest for the sports programs to be successful.

But let’s be completely honest here. We don’t know how those women would feel in a world where they had equal opportunities from the beginning. A woman being allowed to try out for a college baseball team isn’t competing on an equal basis if prior to that she had to play on girls’ softball teams because the lower levels are segregated. A woman trying out for a college ice hockey team isn’t competing on the same basis as the men if she wasn’t able to play organized ice hockey because at the lower levels the sport was sex segregated and there was no girls team. But none of that was caused by Title IX- for whatever reason, “contact” sports are generally divided by gender and/or age, not size, and Title IX neither forces that segregation nor forbids it.

Well, it does matter that women are less interested- but it also matters why. Are they less interested because they are steered away from the more difficult math and science courses in high school, because “girls aren’t good at math”? That certainly is sexism, although on the part of school counselors, not employers, and there was legislation to remedy it- Title IX. Has it worked perfectly? No. When I was in high school, I was discouraged from taking a shop class- my guidance counselor wanted me to take home ec. Just because I was female. But at least I wasn’t forbidden to take the shop class, as I might have been 20 years earlier. (and by the way, being discouraged in this way works against both sexes- I’m sure if a male student had wanted to take home ec, the counselor would have discouraged him)).

What about a male who is talented enough to beat all the players on the women’s basketball team, but not good enough to make it on the men’s team? Why shouldn’t he get a scholarship? Why is a person’s sex an important determining factor?

Women want a double standard, hiding behind their sex for protection from competition when convenient, and at the same time claiming that they want to be treated just like the men.

I say make all sports sex neutral, and let the chips fall where they may. What could be more fair than that?

Another way of looking at this is to ask how many sports, both men’s and women’s, are dropped or underfunded so that huge budgets can be spent on football.

I may get flamed for poor/no cites, but I read of a California University that dropped a couple of men’s sports (diving and wrestling, maybe) and blamed Title IX. That university saved $240,000 by doing so, but still spent some $5m or so on football.

Sometimes a whole sport could be funded just by dropping a couple of football scholarships (out of the dozens that some places give).

What amazes me is that Title IX, as DMC points out, deals with “any education program or activity”

But the entire direction of this thread is sports.

It’s nice to know that in a gathering of learned and erudite people on a board dedicated to the fighting of ignorance, the general consensus is that the principal purpose of American schools is to field athletic teams!


Gosh, Polycarp that is an amazing observation. Could it be because sports is one of the few, and perhaps the only, places in education where there are blatant divisions between the sexes? I can recall seeing a men’s golf team, and a women’s golf team, a men’s tennis team, and a women’s tennis team, etc. etc. etc. I can’t ever recall seeing (in my lifetime) a men’s physics class and a women’s physics class.

Also, who, exactly, said that the principal purpose of American schools is to field athletic teams? Please, point me in their direction. Until then, :rolleyes: right back at you