mump boy wrote:larkim wrote:I don't know how this can be overcome for me, which does challenge my normally very liberal views!!
Replying to this thread did make me think about my attitudes, which is a good thing! I have the utmost respect for anyone at all achieving (or appearing to achieve) the maximum from their personal potential. That's different from me actually wanting to watch it, or be engaged with their progress towards it.
In relation to my blatant (latent?) sexism, I am not alone. What is the "blue riband" (for most people!) event on the track at the OLG? Mens 100m. Wimbledon? Men's final. Football? Men's premiership. Cricket? Men's Ashes. Cycling? Men's Tour de France. I agree that part of the reason these events are put on a pedestal is old fashioned sexist ideas. But I also don't think it is inappropriate to recognise that in these areas the male performance at these sports is also the best human performance at these sports. Paula Radcliffe's WR compared to Patrick Macau's? Paula's time is exceptional (for a woman), astonishing, stunning. But the best the world has ever seen is Patrick's. His is the "world record", he is the fastest human to have covered a (IAAF certified) marathon course.
I also think that there are several sports which would benefit from the gender divide being merged - why on earth is lawn bowls played as male or female? Curling, golf, darts (!)... Why retain a gender divide, it only reinforces the "men are best" attitude. Some sports are fantastic at levelling the playing field. Equestrianism, sailing, both sports which are not without physical exertion, are gender neutral at the olympics. The best rider (& horse), the best yachtsperson wins the medal.
If a woman was sacked from her job for not being capable of managing the physical exertions of her job because she was female, that would (rightly) be regarded as sexism. But in sport, its OK to be slower, lower, less strong. And that's not sexist?