Friday, April 06, 2007

Homophobia, sexism and women's sports--same old, same old

Though I'm here (in Charleston) to attend a tennis tournament, right now, I want to talk about basketball, or--more accurately--homophobia and sexism in women's sports. Ken at After Atalanta nails the issue perfectly when she points out that such incidents as the Pokey Chatman resignation are anything but "isolated." They become fodder for public discussion and hang-wringing when lesbians are involved, but they do not raise a brow when heterosexual male coaches are involved.

Ken also exposes the internalized sexism of people like Pat Summit, who is defending the use of the term, "Lady ______s" as a team name for women.


I learned a new word. Heterosexism. I heard it from a friend who lives near Denver. She was asked to prepare a class for kids, inviting gays, lesbians, transsexuals, and bi-sexuals, as well as differently-abled and little people of various stripes to show the diversity of people and how everyone should be treated with the same kindness and respect. Apparently some of the parents in this school were concerned that their kids were growing up too entrenched in heterosexist attitudes because they weren't being exposed to enough human diversity.

I knew it had to be true, because of who I heard this from. But still, I live in Kansas. I don't care if we do have a Democrat Attorney General now, that kind of thinking is so wildly not Kansas that it's kind of mind blowing. Wow, there are places in the United States like this. Of course, these people are rich and half of the kids have wheat allergies. I'm not saying they aren't a quirky bunch. But Wow!

We've got to get out of this place. -L

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:18 PM  

As a fellow fan of ken's blog, I thought you might appreciate that her title is After Atalanta, a nod to the female athlete of Greek mythology (and "Free to Be") fame. Her inaugural post explains it all.

By Blogger EBuz, at 5:44 PM  

EBuz, that was a typo; thanks for catching it. I've blogged about Ken's blog for some time now; last night, I was tired, and didn't catch the typing error.

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