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Patrick

Patrick is a mid-40 year old geek with an undergraduate degree in mathematics and a master's degree in Information Systems. Nothing he says here has anything to do with the official position of his employer or any other institution.

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31 Responses

  1. Avatar Ethan
    Ignored
    says:

    Thanks Patrick…now I get to spend the ride home seething.Report

  2. Avatar Mike Schilling
    Ignored
    says:

    At the Super Bowl, a 9-year-old girl — a tackle football sensation from Utah — sat with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

    What was she being punished for?Report

  3. Avatar Mr. Blue
    Ignored
    says:

    If girls should be able to try out for the boys’ flag football team (if there isn’t a girls’ one available) should boys be able to try out for the girls’ volleyball team (if there isn’t a boys’ one available)?

    This might be a case that works itself out, tho. If what Avilo says is true, then you can form a team of either gender for any sport if you can get enough participants. And if you can’t, then letting them cross may not be a bad idea.

    The dangling question for me when I hear stories like this, though, is that if we looked at these things race-neutrally, girls could be run out of the sports that are theirs (volleyball and softball, mostly).Report

    • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
      Ignored
      says:

      Should boys be able to try out for the girls’ volleyball team (if there isn’t a boys’ one available)?

      If there isn’t a boy’s one available? Sure.

      Girls could be run out of the sports that are theirs (volleyball and softball, mostly).

      Every place I’ve ever been that had an organized volleyball team had ’em for both sexes. And I never met a guy who’d rather play softball than baseball.

      I’ll let the women comment on whether or not they’re worried about boys running girls out of the sports that are “theirs”, but I think that would be a nice problem to have, actually. It would indicate, among other things, a lot more parity in the way sports-related activities split along gender lines than what we have now.Report

      • Avatar Mr. Blue in reply to Patrick Cahalan
        Ignored
        says:

        In Tennessee and Texas (and the NCAA) Volleyball is usually the girls’ counterpart to football. No boys’ teams.

        You might be right about softball, but if a school is big enough that not everybody can be on the baseball team, you might get some boys moving over to the softball team. I don’t think you’d see nearly as many girls on the baseball team.

        Instead of parity, I think at least in schools where there is competition for roster spots, you’d see boys-only or boys-mainly sports (like football), boys’ and girls’ segregated sports (like basketball or track), and girls’ sports being coed.Report

        • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
          Ignored
          says:

          In Tennessee and Texas (and the NCAA) Volleyball is usually the girls’ counterpart to football. No boys’ teams.

          I think this might be a problem with Tennessee and Texas, not a problem with boys and girls teams, generally.Report

    • Avatar Creon Critic in reply to Mr. Blue
      Ignored
      says:

      The volleyball example was in the news in New York recently, the school and school district said let the boy play and the league said no. As I see it, as long as coed teams aren’t being used as a mechanism to undermine Title IX it is fine.Report

      • Avatar Mr. Blue in reply to Creon Critic
        Ignored
        says:

        What if it has the effect of undermining Title IX, even if that’s not the intent? I find coed sports to be some degree of incompatible with Title IX unless you’re spelling out the gender balance of rosters.Report

        • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
          Ignored
          says:

          Title IX exists to help a disadvantaged class. If it’s undermining Title IX, then it’s clearly extending the disadvantage class, instead of reducing it.

          I don’t think this is an impossible circle to square. Like Jaybird’s “err on the side of liberty”, you err on the side of the disadvantaged class.

          Yes, that’s temporally unjust against some small number of the advantaged class. I think we can handle it.Report

          • Avatar Mr. Blue in reply to Patrick Cahalan
            Ignored
            says:

            So then, let the girls play football but if there’s a problem keep the boys from playing volleyball?Report

            • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
              Ignored
              says:

              Pretty much.

              Let me know when boys have severely constrained access to sports and I’ll start worrying about the consequences.Report

              • Avatar Mr. Blue in reply to Patrick Cahalan
                Ignored
                says:

                They arguably are, in some places and in some sense. A lot more boys are turned away from playing on the boys’ school basketball team than on the girls’ due to differences in participation levels.

                But that depends on how you look at this: If you have twice as many slots on boys’ teams than girls’ teams, but interest is 4x higher on the male side, whose access is being constrained?Report

              • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
                Ignored
                says:

                But that depends on how you look at this: If you have twice as many slots on boys’ teams than girls’ teams, but interest is 4x higher on the male side, whose access is being constrained?

                This is ultimately a much more targeted and just criticism. Let’s stick with this.

                I look at “access” as both an issue of preference and substance. If I have twice as many slots on the boys’ team as the girls’ team, but interest is 4x higher on the males’ side (assuming you’re talking raw numbers here, not individual preferences), whose access is constrained is as much a domain problem as it is a preference problem.

                If interest is 4x higher on the males’ side than on the females’ side, across the board, then a fairly small population ratio of men (relatively) to women can effectively dispossess all the women from access to any sport, yes?Report

              • Avatar Rod Engelsman in reply to Mr. Blue
                Ignored
                says:

                Our high school has three boys teams, A, B, and C (provided there’s enough boys signing up). And then (I think) only one girls team. We just make more slots as required.

                And the boys C team usually spends most of their time playing the A (and only) team from smaller nearby school districts.Report

            • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
              Ignored
              says:

              Given the specific example cited by Creon, I’d have to check the particulars before I said it was a problem here.

              I’d guess that it would probably not represent a systemic problem for the league to let the boy play on the girls team and they made the wrong decision, but I could see the converse of that also being the case.Report

        • Avatar Creon Critic in reply to Mr. Blue
          Ignored
          says:

          Not claiming any expertise on Title IX here, but I don’t see how coed teams pose a significant challenge to the elements of the three prong test. What I had in mind was the danger of using a single girl on the football team as reason to eliminate/greatly reduce a school’s commitments to girls athletics. So coed teams are fine while remaining sensitive to the possibility of that sort of discrimination.Report

      • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Creon Critic
        Ignored
        says:

        Just briefly perused the Yonkers story and in a city of 200,000 I think a senior in high school who has a driver’s license can probably find a regular volleyball league to play in, if he’s good enough for a scholarship.

        Hiyup.

        I’m not so sure this qualifies as a severe limitation on his rights to access.Report

        • Avatar Mr. Blue in reply to Patrick Cahalan
          Ignored
          says:

          If Ella could play flag football, but not for a school team where boys are allowed to play, would you consider that acceptable?

          Should “good enough for a scholarship” be the bar for access to sports?

          Sorry if these questions sound rhetorical or snarky. I honestly don’t see a way for fairness to actually occur in sports. We’re just talking about varying degrees of unfair.Report

          • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
            Ignored
            says:

            I honestly don’t see a way for fairness to actually occur in sports. We’re just talking about varying degrees of unfair.

            I’ll note that I agree entirely 1000% with this, from the get-go.

            Granted, we’re not going to get to “fair”. We’re stuck with “unfair”. So the question is “how unfair, and to whom?”Report

          • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mr. Blue
            Ignored
            says:

            If Ella could play flag football, but not for a school team where boys are allowed to play, would you consider that acceptable?

            To follow up on that specific question, in this particular case I think the problem is that there really isn’t a terrible disjoin between sexes that warrants a sex-linked discrimination, on the skill side.

            13 year old girls and 13 year old boys can probably coexist in any old league. So having them not coexist is something that bears the burden of justification. At 16+, it’s something more of the other way around.Report

            • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Patrick Cahalan
              Ignored
              says:

              A bunch of friends and I used to play soccer after work on Fridays. One afternoon, another friend happend to come by with the team he coached, a bunch of 10-year old girls. We all decided it would be fun to have a game against them.

              They started to beat the crap out of us. They were fast, and good passers, and had amazing dribbling and general ball-control skills. They were just unstoppable. At least until we realized we could use our weight to push them off the ball. The little so-and-sos had no answer for that!Report

              • Avatar Patrick Cahalan in reply to Mike Schilling
                Ignored
                says:

                You take the Marty McSorley solution, there.

                You have one of your players who is getting pushed off the ball kick the dude in the nuts. She gets kicked out with the red card and the rest of the game guys think twice about just overpowering the other team.Report

              • Avatar DRS in reply to Mike Schilling
                Ignored
                says:

                Mike has a great point: boys and girls can play the same game (or sport) but they’re going to play it different ways. Girls can play with speed, boys can play with weight. The big problem for co-ed teams is what sport they’re playing, whether it’s dependent on one particular way to play rather than allowing for both.

                Perhaps the answer is to evaluate each sport and set up teams that reflect how the sport is played. Flag football sounds like something that can accommodate girls’ involvement; tackle football, perhaps not so much.Report

    • Avatar KatherineMW in reply to Mr. Blue
      Ignored
      says:

      If there are enough guys interested in playing the game that there’s a significant danger of girls being “run out of their sports”, then there’s enough interest to allow the formation of both boys’ and girls’ teams.

      If there’s one guy who wants to join the field hockey team (that’s the sport I associate most with being female-specific), and he’s good enough, let him.Report

      • Avatar A Teacher in reply to KatherineMW
        Ignored
        says:

        The problem you run into is what if’ it’s not enough boys to run them out but enough to tip the scales?

        I had a friend in HS who was 6″3′ and loved volleyball. By all accounts ~he~ was very good at it and with his height could easily have played the net and denied anyone a chance to clear it (save those who were taller than him). Given that the average height of an adult woman is 5″6′ the odds did not favor too many high school girls being able to match him in height. He alone could have tipped the scales of a single game.

        He was also denied permission to join the girls’ team and we did not have a boys team. According to the school, the boys sport for that time of year was water-polo.

        Honestly I don’t know where I stand on it besides being thankful it’s not up to me.Report

        • Avatar Fnord in reply to A Teacher
          Ignored
          says:

          There is that, but, well, what about the people with prodigious natural gifts in sports that happen to be the same gender as everyone else? You can’t really claim that someone like Kerri Walsh (3 time Olympic gold medalist) didn’t tip the scales of plenty of volleyball games in high school.

          It’s complicated.Report

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