INTERVIEW with the Great Christina Hoff Sommers concerning Title IX. The interviewer is Betsy Hart who is an ally of ours, but most of her stuff is a bit too–I don’t know–for me to post but we’ll headline the day with this one. Skip the first 10 minutes. Her intro is.ah, talk showesque.

Here’s The Washington Post article from which the interview spawned:

“What’s good for women’s basketball will be good for nuclear physics.

To most Americans, that statement will sound odd. To President Obama, it apparently does not. In an October letter to women’s advocacy groups, he declared that Title IX, the law that requires universities to give equal funding to men’s and women’s athletics, had made “an enormous impact on women’s opportunities and participation in sports.” If pursued with “necessary attention and enforcement,” the same law could make “similar, striking advances” for women in science and engineering.

That campaign pledge is hardening into policy, which ought to give people pause. In February, the Congressional Diversity and Innovation Caucus met with academic deans and women’s groups to plan for the new Title IX deployment. Nearly everyone present agreed that closing the gender gap in the laboratory is an urgent “national imperative.” What they failed to consider, however, is how enforced parity might affect American science. To get a better idea, let’s look at President Obama’s statements:

“Title IX has had an enormous impact on women’s opportunities and participation in sports.” Indeed, Title IX has contributed to significant progress in women’s athletics – but at what cost to male student athletics? Consider the situation at Washington’s Howard University. In 2007, the Women’s Sports Foundation, a powerful Title IX advocacy group, gave Howard an “F” grade because of its 24-percentage-point “proportionality gap”: Howard’s student body was 67 percent female, but women constituted only 43 percent of its athletic program. In 2002, Howard cut men’s wrestling and baseball and added women’s bowling, but that did little to narrow the gap. Unless it sends almost half of its remaining male athletes to the locker room, Howard will remain blacklisted and legally vulnerable. Former Howard wrestling coach Wade Hughes sums up the problem this way: “The impact of Title IX’s proportionality standard has been disastrous because… far more males than females are seeking to take part in athletics.”

Title IX could make “similar striking advances” for women in science and engineering. Indeed it could – but at what cost to science? The idea of imposing Title IX on the sciences began gaining momentum around 2002. Then, women were already earning nearly 60 percent of all bachelor’s degrees and at least half of the PhDs in the humanities, social sciences, life sciences and education. Meanwhile, men retained majorities in fields such as physics, computer science and engineering. Badly in need of an advocacy cause just as women were beginning to outnumber men on college campuses, well-funded academic women’s groups alerted their followers that American science education was “hostile” to women. Soon there were conferences, retreats, summits, a massive “Left Out, Left Behind” letter-writing campaign, dozens of studies and a series of congressional hearings. Their first public victim? Larry Summers, who was forced to resign as president of Harvard University in 2006 after he dared to question the groups’ assumptions and drew a correlation between the number of women in the sciences and gender differences implied in math and science test data.

Is it true that women are being excluded from academic science programs because of sexist bias? Some researchers agree that bias is to blame; others, perhaps a majority, suggest that biology and considered preference explain why men and women gravitate to different academic fields. But researchers who dispute the bias explanation played little or no role in the Title IX conferences, summits or congressional hearings.”

More Leftist Intolerance on College Campuses. This time it’s Don Feder being accused of hate crime commission by activists. His sin? He questions the worth of hate crimes legislation. This disaster occurred at Mass-Amherst, and yes, Feder handles it very poorly.

Cathy Young’s analysis of the event:

“While Feder was not shouted down or physically threatened as some other speakers have been, a video posted on YouTube shows that the protesters were blatantly disruptive from the start. They laughed raucously when Feder was introduced as an “author and intellectual.” The announcement that no protests or disruptions would be tolerated during the speech was greeted with open jeers.

As Feder began to speak, the protesters hissed and hooted. At one point, a group of them noisily turned around their chairs to face away from the podium. Finally, a woman in the audience interrupted Feder, rising to shout out a statement about the murder of a transgendered African-American woman. Feder asked the police to escort her out; from the video, it appears that she walked out on her own, to the cheers of her fellow protesters, and even paused to wave to her friends and yell a derogatory comment to Feder.

Finally, as the disruptions continued, Feder cut his speech short and left the podium.

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), a group that champions civil liberties in academia, took up the case on behalf of the Republican Club, asking UMass-Amherst to refund the extra security fee. On April 9, the day The Boston Globe featured an op-ed about the dispute by FIRE vice-president Robert Shibley, UMass associate council Brian Burke wrote to FIRE that the refund would be made, though denying any impropriety on the part of the college.”

Thugtician on the worthlessness of the debate over skin tone in the black community. He’s running this new channel and another copy called “Thugticion.”


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