The Thinking 

Inequality and Women’s Sports

June 15, 2012


TITLE IX, the federal law which institutionalized discrimination against men in collegiate athletics, has not been a success, say sports experts interviewed by The New York Times. That’s because whites are deliberately excluding black women from scholarships and team participation.

Even though black women are wildly overrepresented in track and field and Division I basketball, they remain a small percentage of the athletes in swimming, lacrosse, soccer, and softball and therefore must be the targets of unfair bias. The idea that black girls are not interested in these sports or that their parents are not interested in getting up at 5 a.m. to take them to swimming practice is not entertained.

Tina Sloan-Green, founder and president of the Black Women in Sport Foundation, says:

“These white women don’t want us to compete with them. They want their kids to get the scholarships. They’re thinking about themselves. They give us all kinds of awards, but when it comes time to distributing the money, it’s a whole other story.”

As a result, she said, many black women are excluded from professional opportunities too.

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