I doubt it. I doubt if anything can be more ethically and logically muddled than the article —actually two articles—about another biological male crushing female competitors in a women’s sports competition. Right at the start, the USA Today piece sets a new absurd bar for “It isn’t what it is” rhetoric. The article begins, “The sentiment is universal: Everyone agrees that Andraya Yearwood should be allowed to compete in her chosen races as a girl.”
Wait: the same article in its headline says that Yearwood’s eligibility is a matter of “controversy.” If there is controversy, then obviously the sentiment isn’t “universal.” Normally, a statement that self-evidently contradictory would make me stop reading because the writer is an idiot, but I read this junk so you won’t have to.
The next sentence is just as bad:
After all, she identifies as a girl, trains alongside fellow females and plans to eventually undergo hormone therapy to complete a transition from her male birth gender to female.
“After all’? None of that is convincing proof that a biological male should be competing against women. Then Cam Smith—that’s the name of the idiot, whom USA Today entrusts with High School sports stories—gets the Triple Crown, or a hat trick, or whatever you call three brain-melting statements in a row:
What is much harder to determine, as outlined beautifully in this Hartford Courant piece by Jeff Jacobs, is whether her competing as a girl in the Class M state track and field meet was fair.
Uh, Cam? If it isn’t fair, then Yearwood should not be allowed to compete, and may I add, “Duh.”
As for the “beautifully outlined” article, it’s just as as bad as Cam’s, indeed worse. Do you doubt me? For example, Jacobs writes,
Andraya Yearwood identifies as a girl. She is recognized by her school district as a girl. Those are the parameters of the CIAC rules. They are clear. Andraya should be able to compete as a girl. The question of what is fair competitively is nuanced and difficult….The CIAC handbook points to applicable state and federal laws. In 2011, the state legislature extended the scope of Connecticut’s anti-discrimination laws to prohibit discrimination on the basis of “gender identity or expression.” It’s a civil right.
There is a civil right for men to compete against women in women’s sports? No there isn’t. Nor is it “discrimination” to hold that only biological women should compete in women’s competitions. The fact that Woke World ideologues ( as well as weenies and cowards terrified of being attacked as bigots) have allowed this unfair situation to develop doesn’t make it an ethical result. Then Jacobs writes,
After the Trump administration rolled back some guidelines, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy signed an executive order in February ensuring that the rights of transgender students receiving an education continue uninterrupted.
All of this is to be applauded.
Why should “all this” be “applauded” if it is unfair and makes no sense? And why would telling a biological male student that he-now-identifying-as-she won’t be allowed to make a joke out of women’s sports competitions interfere with that student’s “education”? I didn’t participate in any school sports in high school or college, and my education was pretty damn good. At least I can identify poorly reasoned crap when I see it. Maybe if I had identified as a girl, it would have been better, but I doubt that
The hits just keep on coming for this (according to USA Today) brilliant analysis:
Yearwood, who has yet to undergo any hormonal treatment on the long process toward sex reassignment surgery, sprinted faster than anyone else for two state class titles. Was it fair? On a biologically competitive basis, it was not.
Then it was not fair, period. Because it was not fair, Yearwood should not have been allowed to compete. Of course. But Jacobs, like Smith can’t face reality, or basic ethics. So Jacobs blathers on, determined to double-talk his way out of an unavoidable conclusion. He quotes Yearwood’s father:
“As her father, I never think about it as competition. This is not about winning and losing races. This is about the health of my teenage daughter. In terms of the fairness aspect, I don’t think about that as a father. I only think about, is my daughter happy, healthy and able to participate in what she wants to do? I don’t care if she wins or loses. I don’t care if she wins and gives the medals back. She got to compete as a girl where she feels she should compete. That’s all that matters to me.”
Wow, that helps a lot. The father of the male claiming to be a girl doesn’t care whether anything is fair, as long as it makes his daughter happy. How is his completely bias- and emotion-driven attitude remotely relevant to the issue? The same kind of statement could be used to “justify” armed robbery, or child rape. I guess the father’s “reasoning” helps explain why his son/daughter has no qualms about cheating.
Someone, make him stop! But Jacobs goes on and on with one rationalization, illogical conclusion, fallacy and non sequitur after another:
- “The International Olympic Committee last year adopted a policy that removed the need for women to undergo sex-reassignment surgery to compete. The waiting period went from two years after surgery to one year after the start of hormone replacement theory. This matches up with NCAA rules.”
“Everybody does it,” plain and simple, plus an appeal to authority. These were decisions driven by political correctness and politics.
- “Transgender boys and girls, some of whom are rejected by families and those around them, have been documented to have more suicide attempts and substance abuse. Their inclusion in high school sports is paramount. Their feelings must be honored.”
What? They must be allowed to unfairly excel in women’s sports because they might kill themselves otherwise? By what reasoning must “their feelings” be “honored”? This is New Age nonsense at its worse. Feelings do not create mandates on public policy or the conduct of others, particularly eccentric or unjustifiable feelings.
I guess some of the female competitors who are unfairly defeated better get busy and start their suicide attempts so they can have their “feelings” respected too.
- “For me, somebody who has observed sports and written about all kinds of athletes for four decades, the integrity of the state competition for these two races Tuesday was compromised.”
Than why are you blathering on like this? Sporting events without integrity are fraudulent. They cheat the athletes and spectators. They contradict the entire purpose of sport.
- “In (second place finisher) Hall’s case…Stonington coach Ben Bowne said. ‘She works really hard. She’s a very competitive athlete. She hates losing to anybody. I’ve just told her all year run your best. If this girl has better times than you, she’s going to help you as a runner. That’s what we focused on.”
Oh! Then why not have the men’s team compete against your women all the time, coach? After all, it will make them better runners! Then Jacobs quotes Hall…
- “From what I know she is really nice and that’s all that matters. She’s not rude and obnoxious.”
That’s all that matters! As long as you’re nice about it, cheating is OK.
Jacobs’ article as well as Smith’s are either the product of an ethically handicapped culture incapable of critical thinking, or are guaranteed to create one.
33 thoughts on “On Transgender Competitors Being Permitted In Women’s Sports: Is It Possible To Be More Ethically And Logically Muddled Than This?”
I forgot to note: Nice mustache, girl!
He doesn’t run particularly well. I wonder where his times would place him against high school boys. Also, he’s just a freshman. This is going to go on for three more years.
When is Oliver Cromwell’s name going to be removed from the CT town and its high school? I’m half Irish. It makes me feel unsafe. Aren’t there any Irish Catholics in CT?
There’s making an argument and then there’s gratuitous comments about someone’s appearance.
The first is stating you peace, the second is acting like an asshole. Is your problem that the runner is XY or that the runner doesn’t meet your standards of pretty.
She smiled at you, isn’t that what you want?
Yup. You want to know why you’re losing commenters, Jack? You’re getting snarkier and nastier as time goes by. When I stumbled on the site I stayed for insightful and incisive commentary, sprinkled with humor. Lately it’s a rare post that goes by without you engaging in name calling and straw man arguments, with “ethical behavior” becoming “behavior exactly in line with Jack Marshall’s specific ideals.” When you drift from occasionally calling someone a hack or a fick, to regularly calling people assholes, to gratuitously making fun of someone’s appearance, you’re drifting toward the same nasty drek I can find on Twitter.
I keep reading because there IS good stuff here. It’s just getting harder to balance it against what’s bad. I don’t know if it’s just the state of the world grinding down on your patience or what, but it’s ugly and it’s sad to watch when I know you can write so much better.
What gratuitous comments about someone’s appearance?
The “woman” who is competing against other “girls” is a mid-puberty male, and the hair on his upper lip is something I, as a previously mid-puberty male can recall, and as the father of a 27-year-old son am quite familiar with, have experience with. And it is materially different from the similar fuzz I knew well as a member of a Greek family with many women, young and old.
I didn’t notice it in the photo until I posted the photo, which I typically do last.
I do snarkiness checks, you know. Five years ago, Still Spartan told me I was being too mean to commenters, and I was. I am, if anything, less narky now than then, except that there is more to be snarky about. As for “jerk,””hack” and “asshole,” I use them when I genuinely feel nothing else is accurate.
Are you up to defending these two ridiculous and insulting articles against my verdict of hackery? Then please do: I’d love to read it. And please show me the “straw man arguments” I promise not to be “mean.”
Or if you were just piling on because you were unreasonably triggered because I mentioned a “female swimmer’s MUSTACHE while discussing the fairness of having “her” compete in a girls’ tournament, then admit it. Because that was NOT gratuitous.
If I thought there was the slightest chance of convincing you, I would take my best shot at convincing you. Unfortunately I’ve seen how you tend to respond in these situations: regardless of what is put in front of you, you say that the person who disagrees with you is wrong. I can see you gearing up to do it here- you claim you do a “snark check” (which isn’t at all subjective, I’m sure). I’ll be accused of being “triggered” and “piling on” because that’s what you’ve decided must be happening. If you respect your commenters as much as you claim to, perhaps you’d consider that when the old-timers call you out on something it’s possible we aren’t entirely wrong.
Or don’t do that, and just leap to the knee-jerk defense that whatever you said was right and if anyone had a problem they’re triggered and unfair and bad. You’ll salvage your ego and continue to be bewildered why this place slowly creeps toward being an echo chamber, finding a new reason to claim that every long-time commenter who departs was just pouting over how wrong they are.
Gee, thanks for giving me a chance, Luke. “It wouldn’t do any good” should be on the rationalization list if it isn’t already.
For the record, I have many, many times retracted excessive rhetoric or apologized when I was out of line. I also draw a hard line between the posts and my replies to comments.
Is Donald Trump an asshole? Absolutely. Is Dana Milbank a hack? Of course. Is Charles Blow a race-baiting jerk? Who can deny it? Is Joy Behar an idiot? I believe that withholding clear dscriptions whan the facts are clear helps the unethical sneak around principles; Prof. Turley drives me nuts when the worst he can say about dangerous, outrageous conduct is that it’s concerning” or “troubling.” And, yes, I cop to sometimes stating a position less equivocally than I might, in part to set up the discussion.
Just for the hell of it, I checked your comments going back more than a year. You didn’t make a single complaint about my commentary being snarky or increasingly nasty. However, in response to one of your few critical comments, I responded,
“Luke: you’re right, I’m wrong. Gee, I guess I should have checked before shooting off my mouth. My mistake—I’m sorry.”
But I guess that was just me making “a knee-jerk defense that whatever you said was right and if anyone had a problem they’re triggered and unfair and bad.”
The person is an athlete. Commenting on their athleticism or lack thereof is perfectly fair game, I think. As a side note, he strikes me as a perfectly fine looking ninth grade boy.
Oh. You were objecting to Jack commenting on the kid’s mustache.
If he’s going through puberty as a boy, why is he allowed to compete as a girl? Shouldn’t he be taking puberty blocking medicines? Shouldn’t he be required to transition? And if he’s too young, then should he still be allowed to compete as a fully masculine boy? Isn’t it unfair to the other competitors? And isn’t this against the current gender transitioning practices? Inquiring minds want to know.
But this is all irrelevant to the question presented which is, “Is it fair for this person to be competing in ‘women’s’ athletic competitions?”
And to answer the question: No. It’s not fair for an obviously fully masculine fourteen- or fifteen-year-old boy to compete against girls regardless of his thinking or feeling he’s actually a girl.
As I just wrote Luke, it is a relevant observation that this “girl” whom we must call a “she” is, in fact, a pubescent boy. Is that really so difficult to discern? If I had an appropriately revealing photo, I would have preferred to write, “And nice package, girl!”
He’s not mocking his appearance. He’s clearly a handsome man. But he’s also clearly GOT A MUSTACHE BECAUSE HE’S A DUDE. I think that’s the obvious point. It makes a mockery out of the whole idea of women’s sports if you ignore biological reality.
Anyways, what is the article/post directly below this one about?
Thanks. I consider the complaints by Valky and Luke very unfair: I virtually never engage in ad hominem attacks based on appearance, because I consider the practice unethical and have written so many, many time, defending Hillary Clinton, Rush Limbaugh, Trump and others against such slurs. And the comment at issue was not that. And, I would say, obviously.
Isn’t one of your usual beliefs that something unethical is unethical? Where’s the exception for “I hardly ever do this unethical thing so It’s OK for me to do it once in a while?” or “Others do this unethical thing a lot, and I call them out on it, so it’s unfair to call me out for doing it?” or maybe it’s “I feel so strongly about a related issue that it’s OK for me to unethically express my thoughts?”
Another one of my beliefs is that there are legitimate exceptions to all rules, but this one doesn’t require an exception. I was not making fun of the kid’s appearance. I was—legitimately—pointing out that his appearance undercuts any argument that he should be allowed to compete against women/girls. Heck, the least he could have done was have. Talk about rubbing it in…why not compete with a beard, since identifying as an XX is good enough?
Jack’s comment about the mustache may not have been too kind to this runner, but it calls into question the entire issue, doesn’t it?
This entire exchange is a wonderful example of misdirection: Jack drops sarcasm and we call out our faithful Ethics Alarms Host for his oversnarkation so that we can ignore what is happening here: That males athletes competing against female athletes unfair and damaging to female athletes and women’s sports because male athletes (in a sport where strength and endurance are vital to performance) have a distinct physical advantage.
Michael Phelps would clobber Katie Ledecke in most head-to-head events because Phelps is taller and stronger and faster than Ledecke, even though Ledecke is an amazing, gifted and extremely talented swimmer/athlete. Michael Jordan or LeBron James will outperform the highest, best performing WNBA centers for the same reasons. Ronaldo or Messi would outperform Abby Womback, even though women’s soccer tends to be more exciting to watch because women don’t waste time with the obligatory flops because a television viewer in Arlington, VA, dropped the remote causing half of the men playing the damn game in Barcelona to fall to the ground, writhing in soul-crushing pain.
That is not criticizing women; it is recognizing that males and females are fundamentally different. When a fully developed male decides he is a she and will compete against women, women bear the cost, especially when they are intimidated to complain about it by the Trans Mob, their activists and supporters. How many of the women Pennsylvania swimmers openly complained? Why is that?
Well, I’m one of the commenters who hasn’t been around, and it’s not because of anything in regards to the content. This was one of only 2 traditional blogs I ever visited, and I haven’t been to either of them lately, in favor of podcasts and such. And THIS blog is just about the most evenhanded and fair that I know of. I have strongly disagreed with some things, but that was never a problem. I think it’s just that blogs are a slowly declining medium anyway, and the ones that do best these days are going to be the most hyper-partisan and extreme ones, sadly.
Biological markers matter, whether some people want them to or not.
At this point in time, in order to save female sports, we need to destroy them, to paraphrase the Vietnam war era saying. All the institutions that are related to sports, the sanctioning bodies, colleges, sports media, etc, are leftist and wokism is the official policy. Any dissenters will labeled as various -ists, conservative media criticism will brushed of as fringe. Parents and athletes will not have the courage of their convictions to speak against this on the record, for fear of reputational harm, etc. I see no indication of the tide turning yet. I always thought the best course of action would be for competitors, who believe this is unfair, to default their race. They line up at the beginning of the event, and before it starts, call the referee, and concede. Let the transgender athletes win every single event without having actually competed. It will rob them of the meaning of their victory, it will be a huge waste of time for everyone, and it will send a message. Them winning the national championship or whatnot will have a big fat asterisk, denoting, that they didn’t actually score any points, had the best time, etc. They won by default, which they most certainly would have anyways. To quote Animal House: “I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part.”
At this point the facts are all in; the rise in transgenderism in young people is a social contagion, not an at-birth orientation. Kids are identifying as things other than heterosexual males and females because they get more care and attention that way, and to fit in somewhere, etc. That means there WILL continue to be more and more transgender women crushing the hopes and dreams of girls everywhere. And that’s going to be kinda funny, as long as you don’t have a daughter in women’s sports.
Yes, this is the approach that may expose the absurdity in the clearest fashion. It is often effective to counter flawed arguments by taking them to their logical conclusion. In this case, I suggest the following:
“Trans people are already born as either female or male, it’s just that their bodies are not matching their actual gender. This being the case, it is cruel to require trans people to undergo extreme surgical or chemical interventions before they are considered to be fully their true gender. Case in point: a trans-woman Olympic weight lifter from New Zealand, Laurel Hubbard, suffered a “gruesome” injury (which appears to have been a dislocated elbow) that was made more likely by her required use of hormone therapy.
This unsustainable, confusing, and potentially harmful burden being placed on trans athletes should be removed. “Trans-women are women” applies regardless of any medical interventions.”
This should lead to trans-women dominating (faster than they otherwise would) most women’s sporting events and to the conclusion that trans-women either need their category or should compete again men.
Those NBA “anti-sexism” ads from a few years back showed famous athletes giving examples of being gentlemen towards women. One NBA star’s sister reflects on how he used to let her win their backyard games.
On the other hand, a muscular man putting on a wig, entering an all-girls’ game, and dunking every girl in sight onto their backs is also considered “really nice” under the new societal rules. Empowering, even. Nothing confusing about that.
Wow. Those quotes were almost physically painful to read. I think the only reason they weren’t was because Jack was already addressing the counterpoints I wanted to bring up. There’s not much I can say that hasn’t already been said, but here’s a few soundbites that might help if anyone runs into this problem in the wild.
The nature of most sports is a form of the liability of conflict: uncertain motivational obstacles. People want to be uncertain about the outcome of a sporting event, such that much of what decides the outcome is the motivation, the character, and the efforts of the competitors. That’s why weight classes in wrestling and boxing exist. If one competitor is larger and more physically powerful than the others, and that makes a predictable difference, that moves the event into the realm of scarcity: known physical obstacles, and out of the realm of sports.
If we want to spend the money to decouple gender and ability in sports, well and good. As long as they’re tied together, though, ability must be the priority for arranging matchups, or else it stops being sports. (Testosterone treatments are a separate factor that would probably need to have its own class, because they’re artificial treatments that cause muscle growth.)
Due to budgetary constraints, only a subset of the most physically capable (cisgender) students are usually able to compete in academic sports, which rules out most students. (Sometimes there are also the equivalent of the Paralympics, to allow people with physical impairments to compete in sports with other athletes of similar physical ability.) Everyone who doesn’t make the team does other things, and sometimes they do amateur sports. People aren’t entitled to be on the school team, though.
This sense of entitlement to participate in activities labeled for a particular gender without understanding why the label exists is hurting acceptance of transgender people. If winning isn’t important to Andraya, why does she want to be on the team? If it is important to her, wouldn’t she want to win through her own efforts instead of through advantages conferred by sexual dimorphism?
“Social justice” doesn’t work when the solution people go with is “give this oppressed person exactly what they ask for using the first method that comes to mind.” There’s a bit more critical thinking required to build a better future.
“Transgender boys and girls, some of whom are rejected by families and those around them, have been documented to have more suicide attempts and substance abuse. Their inclusion in high school sports is paramount.”
So… including them in high school sports, without changing any other aspects of how high school sports work, is the only way to solve this problem? Does everyone involved with high school athletics lack an imagination, or is it just that writer? Don’t they think the drama club wants to help, too? The math team? The art club? The Science Olympiad? The chess club? Creative writing? The debate team? The chorus? Future Business Leaders of America? Model UN? Are the jocks that egocentric, or is my nerd privilege showing and it turns out some people hate all clubs except sports? Or maybe my middle-class privilege is showing and it turns out the school has none of those other things; that would be a whole problem in and of itself.
On a side note, I’m reminded of a scene from The Princess Bride:
Man in Black: “Frankly, I think the odds are slightly in your favor at hand fighting.”
Fezzik (played by Andre the Giant): “It’s not my fault being the biggest and the strongest. I don’t even exercise.” (casually tosses aside a boulder he was holding)
Comment of the Day.
First, it pays to note that the article is five years old (2017). But this is an odd case. Usually the discussion revolves around at what point during transition might someone fairly compete in the women’s division (for some reason, the conversation never really seems to go the other way), and the athletes are always REALLY interested in narrowing that timeframe as much as possible… It’s almost as if they’re not worried about what’s fair so much as there’s some kind of material thing that degrades over time that they’re looking to take advantage of… I wonder what that could be.
Regardless. If prompted, I’d be fine socially with calling Andraya “her”, but the fact of the matter is that she hadn’t started her transition. Which means, and recognizing that this is incredibly crass and offensive in some circles: Andraya was literally a boy in a dress for the purposes of competitive sport. She obviously wasn’t on puberty blockers (or if she started, too little too late), and the article said she would get her consult for hormone treatments the following June…. And in fact, using Google as my guide it seems like she never did. A case filed against the school on behalf of students who had to compete against her was dismissed in 2021 as moot, because Andraya was nolonger competing at the school.
I have opinions, of course… I usually understand the arguments, even if I ultimately disagree. This case is different. This argument is schizophrenic. Without even the fig leaf of cover provided by hormone treatment, the ask here is for trans athletes to just don the uniform of the other gender, no questions asked, not meaningfully grappling with the question of why the other gender’s team is separate, because they’ve misinterpreted “fairness” in an athletic context to mean something very novel.
“Fairness” in sport is like “Equality” in life. It doesn’t mean “Equity”. Some people win. Some people lose. If your organization is lame enough to give out participation medals, fine, participation is still more than what a lot of people do… But hold that against the reality that everyone that participated got that medal and it doesn’t really mean much. What matters when we talk about fairness is the fairness of the competition. In in a nod to the fairness of the competition, we make divisions…
I remember when I was still paying dues to my black belt organization, they required us to put in a certain amount of time coaching the youth division competitors. One of the most frustrating moments of my life was this one inter-academy competition we went to… One of my kids was in the lightest division for his age group, and he was paired up against someone who was a foot shorter than him and probably 30 pounds lighter. It wasn’t fair. The other kid had no business being in the ring. BuT hE wAnTeD tO cOmPeTe!
The point zone in taekwondo is either a headshot or a body shot, but kids aren’t allowed headshots. The point zone is between the hip and the armpit of the front three quarters of the torso. That gave my kid about two square feet of zone to kick, and if he actually tried to score, would probably hospitalize the other kid. I pulled the ref aside, ref wouldn’t do anything, the other kid met minimum standards. My kid looked at me and I went up to him, I asked him what he wanted to do. He said that he wanted to go, but he didn’t want to hurt this kid. I told him to keep that in mind, and to do his best, it wasn’t a great situation, but it’s the cards he was dealt.
It didn’t matter, the other kid came out like a cannonball… hands and legs flying everywhere, my kid could have knocked him into tomorrow, but he held his hits. Took a couple of shots where he could, and kept distance. To this day, I think it was painfully obvious that my kid won, not only as a function of reason, but because I don’t think that the other kid could have REACHED his point zone without a stepping stool. And yet, the judge said that the other kid won. It was a bad call, period. My academy (which is very large and accredited) blackballed the other after that, there were too many examples of garbage like that going on.
My point, in a long and rambling manner, is that divisions aren’t perfect. Sometimes we find ourselves with absurd matchups, and the adults around have to figure out what to do with that, and often we get it wrong. There are two positions that make sense: Either 1) You firm up the divisions and provide clarity as to what the divisions are, why they are, and what they mean, to avoid future absurdity. Or 2) You do away with the divisions, embrace the absurd, and let the chips fall where they may.
Yup, I should have mentioned that the articles were both old. (I was led to them by another source that also didn’t point that out.) But that wouldn’t change my commentary at all.
I’m one of the couple of non-commenters that took the ideology survey, and posted the results, a couple of days ago. For some reason, this post, and others, about the male swimmer competing against female swimmers reminded me of the final scene of “We Were Soldiers” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLboEn1R5wk
There is no reason to post my comment. I’m sending you this link for future reference. I hope you have time to view it (one minute). Can you, like me, see the resemblance of our woke culture to the Vietnamese war.
Anyone delusional enough to believe that they can change their gender by “identifying” as another and by mutilating their bodies to conform to this new “identification,” is certainly capable of internalizing a warped sense of what is ethical, right and “fair.” Certainly, anyone willing to enable their gender delusion would be capable of acquiescing to their warped values as well. No surprises here.
Our “popular culture” has been steadily promoting the rejection of authority of all kinds: moral, ethical, and legal, most obviously for the past fifty to sixty years, and rejection of one level of authority facilitates the rejection of others as well. Freedom and tolerance have gradually become license and normalization of deviance. Recognition of divine authority is now the norm in many areas of our society. Our “woke culture” has finally reached the point where it is acceptable to reject even the truths of biology. Our political culture similarly rejects the truths of economics (e.g., governments cannot create real wealth by printing money).
In my younger days, expressing absurd beliefs in the ridiculously non-factual, and certainly demanding that others participate in them as well, would have resulted in public ridicule or even mental health intervention, but now it fosters legal protection, censorship of opposing arguments and, dare I utter the word, “privilege.”
What’s next, rejecting the laws of physics? I don’t think I would have much luck (yet) in rejecting the law of gravity and “identifying” as weightless (as opposed to all the “weighted” non-believers in non-gravity) and insisting that others carry me around above the ground to enable my self-claimed weightlessness. I might “identify” as a billionaire, but I suspect it would not lead to lucrative business deals or improve my financial situation. But hey, it’s all about the “feelz,” right?
I just finished reading a three-volume autobiography of Mark Twain, and I couldn’t help but wonder what his commentary would be on the current sad state of our society.
Great thoughts, Jim!
So, a couple thoughts that might be somewhat tangential.
I noted digs at Jack about the mustache comment, but…I don’t think I read anything about the substance of the post. Hmmm.
It’s been said more than once that Katie Ledecky, one of the best female swimmers ever, would have no chance against Michael Phelps — one of the best male swimmers ever. But more to the point, if you looked at all 8 of the swimmers in one of Phelps’ events — would Ledecky be able to beat any of them? I say that not to diminish her achievements, but to further illustrate the advantages men have in a head to head competition based on bodily strength, etc. over women. It’s biology, it’s evolution.
Also, I have followed women’s college basketball for many years, albeit not quite so closely the last 2 or 3 years. Obviously, these teams practice just as hard as the men’s teams and can do amazing things. But what I learned a while back, at least for the top women’s programs, was who they practiced against.
The women’s teams will practice against guys, in order to give them a more challenging environment and better training. And we are not talking about the men’s varsity team, either. They have their own training schedule. Without diminishing the women’s accomplishments in any way, the guys they practice against are those who weren’t good enough to be on the men’s team. Just a thought.