CA Lawmaker Speaks Truths on Title IX, Bashing Ensues

The overblown, hostile reactions following California Assemblyman Chris Norby’s public criticism of Title IX enforcement would be laughable if they didn’t mean that the media and activist groups actually believe that Title IX is impervious to criticism. The last time I checked, our society welcomes — no, cherishes — free speech, even if it’s not so pleasant or what the majority of people want to hear. And while contentious debates are permissible for every other law, disagreeing with some aspects of Title IX is just impossible without silencing backlash.
And that’s a shame, especially because Mr. Norby’s comments were truthful:

“We need to be honest about the effects of what I believe are faulty court interpretations or federal enforcement of Title IX, because it has led to the abolition of many male sports across the board in UCs and Cal States…And that was never the intention of this, to have numerical equality. It was never the intention to attain equality by reducing opportunities for the men.”

What’s so controversial about what he said? Nothing, except the regulations, court decisions and cuts he alluded to. Schools, government bureaucrats, and the courts have said that when girls are cut, that’s sex discrimination; when guys are cut, tough luck. Their policies dictate equal outcomes — “numerical equality” — no matter what students’ real preferences are, forcing thousands of men to forgo sports while putting pressure on girls to join teams. They’ve enforced a system that punishes male athletes for wanting to play sports — because they are men. What happened to adhering to “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from…”?

Title IX was created to end the double standard, to guarantee equal opportunities for both genders. Yet here we are, 40 years after the creation of Title IX, and it’s still acceptable to discriminate on the basis of sex via enforcement policies that rely on numbers, not human beings, to judge schools’ compliance with Title IX. And not only that, we are chastising people like Mr. Norby who recognize that this phenomenon is real — and rampant.

Contrary to the popular assertion that Title IX reform will set us back, detract from the athletic experiences of female athletes, and establish male-only sports departments, altering the law’s regulations will strengthen it and guarantee that men and women who want to play sports are able to. Mr. Norby is both correct and brave to reflect on how far we’ve veered away from the original Title IX path; anniversaries aren’t just for celebrating.

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