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ElleTee
RE: University is New Mexico Track/XC still alive, but forced to reduce track/XC roster size

rojo wrote:

The first article says all of the cuts are coming because UNM needs to reduce its budge and wants the male-female percentage of athletes to mirror the studen body percentage. The article says that UNM is 55.4 female in general enrollment but athletes are only 43.8% of the opportunities. After these cuts, in 2019-20, the athletes will be 57.2 percent female.

The thing I don't get about Title IX is a philosophical one. It's now being interpreted by many that the percentages of athletes at a school should mirror the percentage of men/women at the school. My question is why? No one goes in and makes sure the number of biology majors is equal, engineering majors, etc.

Using the logic of mirroring, why don't the feds insist that the male - female split of a university in enrollment equal the male-female split of society? Doesn't the fact that UNM is 55.4% female show us that men and women like different things, are better at different things, etc? No one is insisting that UNM cut it's female enrollment but yet they are insisting they cut it's male athletes? It makes no logical sense.

Based on the reasoning of title IX, it seems that UNM is discriminating against men by having the school b 55.4% female.

If I were one of these legal outfits, I'd try a lawsuit using that logic. I'm thrilled their solution to that isn't to cut 5% of the women to make it 50-50 but think that men should use this logic in a lawsuit.


There are three tests under Title IX that a school can use to show compliance - one of them is that their percentage of athletes enrolled is proportional to their academic enrollment, but the school could choose to meet one of the other tests (that they're expanding opportunities for the underrepresented sex, or that what they are offering fully accommodates the underrepresented population). Of course, it's easier to just do a percentage - especially when schools want to cut their budgets for sports to accommodate football. If you're got 105 roster spots or whatever for men's football (which I think we can all agree is ridiculous), then you start with a base line of needing 105 women playing sports for your university. The problem isn't the women's cross country team is too big and the men's team gets cut - it's that football is driving all the decisions. Back when these rules were in place they came out on the side of men - more men were in college (it wasn't the 55% to 60% split we see now), so at the very worst it would be 50-50.

In any case, Title IX is about mirroring the student population and not locking out people (well, really women) from educational opportunities. It's not about making fundamental changes at the school, and driving them to, say, admit more women to the university generally (there are other laws/lawsuits for that).

I'm not an expert by any means, but I think if you could show that women were trying to get into engineering, biology, etc. majors and were not being let in, then a Title IX complaint would be appropriate. But when there's open enrollment in a major, and the school isn't like, actively working to keep women out (and there's no internal bullying etc. based on sex), the school doesn't have to cut down their engineering program to match the number of women who enroll. Sports are different - universities (especially larger ones) generally don't have problems filling their women's teams, because there are tons of female athletes out there to choose from (50% of high school girls participate in sports). It's not about filling the spots, then, so it's a different issue than what's going on in the STEM fields (where there are spots for women, but they've traditionally chosen not to take them, due to internalized sexism, the boys' club, etc....and perhaps there's even an issue of men over-enrolling in these fields due to their own internalized sexism about what it means to be a man).

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