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Raspberry on Gender Bigots and Funds for School Sports

April 30, 1988

I would like to respond to Raspberry's naive and emotional questions and hypothetical situations concerning equality between the sexes in school athletics, not with similar emotional rhetoric but with two true stories.

I ran cross-country and track at UC Irvine. In 1983 the district finals were held in Eugene, Ore. It rains there quite frequently so we needed rain gear. Since the woman's team didn't have rain sweats we needed to borrow them from the men's team--and return them promptly.

The sport of running is rather an androgynous one, as sports go. In many instances men and women compete in races of the same distance, although not against each other. At my school the men and women shared a distance coach. However, when the men's and women's schedules differed, and when we competed at different locations, the coach always went with the men. It was policy.

As with the separate-but-equal doctrine used between blacks and whites, in this instance too, egalitarianism is a lofty all-American word big enough to hide behind.

SUSAN EDDY

Newport Beach

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