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In what sense are women equal to men? .... I’ve never seen sexually integrated professional boxing matches, football games, basketball games, 100-yard dashes or ice hockey games. Is that because male chauvinists deny women the chance to compete? The military response to the conspicuous absence of women in male-dominated areas suggests a remedy for professional sports. Army fitness standards call for 80 push-ups for men and 56 for women. Male soldiers ages 17 to 25 must run two miles in 17 minutes and 55 seconds. Females are given 22 minutes and 14 seconds. Male Marine trainees must climb 20 feet of rope in 30 seconds; women are given 50 seconds. The military’s “gender-norming” might be implemented in sports. In football, new rules might allow the offensive team’s female pass receiver to take up an uncovered position one-half the distance to the goal behind the defensive team’s line. In the 100-yard dash, women could get a 25-yard head start. In baseball, a mid-field hit might count as a home run. I’m at a loss for what can be done to gender-norm boxing. All that I come up with to level the playing field between a woman and George Foreman or Mike Tyson is to give the woman a gun. ... Feminists themselves wouldn’t want sports desegregated and gender-normed. The folly and disastrous consequences would be obvious to all. For them, gender-norming is best left to areas where its effects are more readily concealed. The fact of business is that we humans are not equal. Some of us are women and some are men. Some are smart and some are not so smart. Some are colored, others are uncolored. Some are tall, and some are short. Some of us are poor, and others wealthy. The differences—inequalities—are endless. Equality before the general rules of law is the only kind of equality conducive to liberty that can be secured without destroying liberty. It is an equality that neither requires nor assumes people are, in fact, equal. Our attempt to make people equal by rigging law to produce results destroys civility and generalized respect for the law. Government cannot create an advantage for one person without simultaneously creating a disadvantage for another. ... Government agencies have no right telling one American he or she can go into a business and another, who is just as able, that he or she cannot.
Walter E. Williams (more quotes by Walter E. Williams or books by/about Walter E. Williams)
(1936- ) Columnist, Professor of Economics at George Mason University
Conservative Chronicle, September 13, 1995.