Noted here and there...
Reflecting on yesterday's 6-3 Supreme Court decision on assisted suicide, one can only conclude that the elevation of Samuel Alito will still leave Anthony Kennedy and other relatively progressive social voices in charge. The key question -- can John Paul Stevens, the court's oldest justice and a moderate liberal, hang on until a Democratic president can name his replacement? Much seems to hinge on that, more than on either of the previous two vacancies.
And then, there's this stunner from Phylis Schlafly: Radical Feminists Reinterpret Title IX. It's filled with the old-time religion that blames women and girls for the decline in male enrollment on college campuses. What's noteworthy is that she builds her piece around the immensely entertaining (and for some of us, heartbreaking) Rose Bowl game of a fortnight ago:
This year's spectacular Rose Bowl game attracted a phenomenal 35.6 million viewers because it featured what we want: rugged men playing football and attractive women cheering them on. Americans of every class, men and women, remained glued to their television sets and nearly 95,000 spectators watched from the stands.
The runaway success of this game proved again that stereotypical roles for men and women do not bother Americans one bit. Political correctness lost out as all-male teams battled and women cheered.
I'm assuming that the "attractive" women Schlafly refers to are the female cheerleaders and dance squad members for USC and the University of Texas. Of course, perhaps she means my lovely wife?
I'm a bit baffled as to how "political correctness" lost out at the Rose Bowl, however. USC, long ago shedding its conservative reputation, has one of the most progressive Gender Studies programs in America, as well as the best archive of lesbian history in the English speaking world. I know plenty of very left-wing gender-studies types affiliated with the university -- and almost to a man and a woman, they are all football-crazed. (Last week I chatted with a sixty-something lesbian couple whom I know, affiliated with USC's ONE Institute and of impeccable PC credentials; they were still gnashing their teeth in frustration at Coach Carroll's play-calling.) So enough with the tired old idea that all authentic feminists don't like football.
Schlafly gets odder:
It's too bad that male sports are being eliminated on most college campuses. Except for Texas, USC, and a few other places, radical feminism rules in the athletic departments at the expense of popular male sports.
Gosh, as I said, 'SC has the most progressive Gender Studies program on the West Coast. And some pretty awesome women's teams in a variety of sports (water polo, track, and at least in the 1980s with Cheryl Miller, basketball.) They've managed to fully fund both men's and women's teams just fine.
More fine logic:
The Rose Bowl proved that public demand is for all-male sports, not female contests. Boys do not want to go to a college that eliminates the macho sports, and that is true even if the boy does not expect to compete himself.
The effects of the feminists' attack on men's sports are now coming home to roost. By the time this year's college freshmen are seniors, the ratio will be 60 percent women to 40 percent men, and women are now crying that there are not enough college-educated men to marry.
China's brutal one-child policy has artificially created millions of young men for whom no wives are available. Right here at home, the feminists have created millions of college-educated women for whom no college-educated men are available, and the trend is getting steadily worse.
The American people clearly want male football, baseball, track and wrestling, and colleges that cut these sports should be cut out of the federal budget.
Well, I don't know what Schlafly means by "eliminate macho sports." The male teams that have been cut by many universities in recent years include swimming and tennis and crew -- not traditionally seen as "macho" compared to football and basketball (which are cut far less often.)
Schlafly suggests that the American public would much rather see men play anything than women. But it's absurd to imply that all intercollegiate men's sports are more popular than all women's sports! Yes, football is the sacred cow of American university athletics. But Phyllis, with all respect, I'm willing to bet I've been to a heck of a lot more intercollegiate track meets than you have. I've sat in a near-empty Drake Stadium at UCLA (one of the most famous venues in the sport), watching the Bruin men in many a dual meet. (Quick: name the defending NCAA champions in cross-country and track. No looking it up on line! Yeah, that's what I thought.) I've been to water polo games and soccer matches and gotten the best seat in the house time and time again -- most folks don't care about the so-called minor sports, regardless of who's playing! On the other hand, the famous University of Tennessee women's basketball program regularly outdraws their male counterparts in terms of spectator attendance, and I've often seen more fans at UCLA softball games than at Bruin baseball matches.
If these are the best arguments against Title IX that the right can come up with, we're in better shape than I thought.