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June 24, 2014

Comments

Sam

Ha. I was just about to email this one to you.

Someone should warn The Patriarchy. It doesn’t stand a chance.

I'll raise it at tonight's emergency meeting.

David

I’ll raise it at tonight’s emergency meeting.

Make sure everyone tunes their amulets to 77 MHz. The emergency jamming frequency. We don’t want any womenfolk listening in.

Dom

Proving once again that everything worth saying has already been said on Futurama:

Thog: Here stadium, where our women basketball teams play.
Kug: We no can dunk, but good fundamentals.
Ornik: That more fun to watch.

Dr Cromarty

Why doesn't she cheer for England. The current team are a bunch of girls.

Jon Powers

What the world needs is Laurie Penny's thoughts on this years World Cup. (I'll bet a life's supply of Scotch that she hates it! Any takers?)

David

Apparently Ms Penny is “wildly” averse to competitive sports in general.

Lancastrian Oik

"I predict there will be little fuss made of the Women's World Cup in Canada next year".

That'll be because, on the whole and compared to the men's game, women's football is dull, dull, dull. Does it not occur to Ms. Wakefield that much of sport's popular appeal is aesthetic? A David Gower cover drive; the original Cruyff turn; a balls-out lap by Gilles Villeneuve; that Barbarians try vs. the All Blacks. There aren't many, or as many, equivalents with women as the protagonists. It's just one of those things, and shouting "get in there , girl" when the footy's on down at the pub is just going to annoy everybody (like she really does go down her local boozer anyway...).

Mojo

Meh. It's soccer. I don't care.

Now, Womyn's Aussie Rules football, that I would watch...

Jonathan

In other News: "It's OK when Brown People say it."

http://tinyurl.com/ol3hpox

matt

It's getting to the point where i think the Guardian is having a lark. It's all so repetitive they must be generating these precious gems via some feminist outrage algorithm and they have a list of names who agreed to be used as bylines.

Sam Duncan

“footballers are doomed to retire as soon as their wisdom teeth fully descend and disabled people are tacitly excluded”

She hasn't been watching England.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

I liked watching the women's volleyball at the Olympics, and I watched the girls competition at Wimbledon when Anna Kournikova used to play, but have to agree with Lancastrian Oik about women's football.

It's boring!

I once accidentally watched the England women play, and I slipped into a coma and died.

The games move incredibly slowly, because women can't run. They can't hit the ball with any pace. Their passing is poor. Tackles are weak. It's Sunday League stuff.

I'm a big fan of both football and women, so let's work out the synergies between these two awesome things. Here's how to make women's football good:

* Smaller pitches - will let them play to their strengths and focus on skill instead of exhausting themselves running the length of a pitch

* Shorter shorts and fitted tops - just because they're playing a man's game doesn't mean they can't be beautiful

* Encourage them to stop closing their eyes and biting their lips when taking penalties

* Abolish penalties, and settle cup games with the fittest girl from each team wrestling in a paddling pull full of KY jelly

* Boobies

I guarantee you, if they heed my advice women's football will become a sensation and gather legions of new fans.

You're welcome, feminists.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Also the polite thing would be not to notice that I can't spell "paddling pool".

splotchy

There’s no Jessica Ennis or Victoria Pendleton to aspire to or root for because these events include male competitors only.

Dear Ms Wakefield,

Biology is sexist - it gave men longer legs and stronger muscles, hence they are better at running and kicking a ball, and carrying on doing it for 90minutes.

So, just to clarify, it is not the fault of the footballers, their clubs, their sporting bodies, the commentators, the media which broadcast them, or the vast numbers of cheering fans (both male and female) worldwide who get great joy from watching something they love. Nor it is the fault of the patriarchy, whoever they are and you really must try not to blame them.

Plz instead blame God (who will ignore you).

Yours helpfully,
Splotchy

dicentra

a men’s competition erases women

We Americans solved this problem LONG ago: ADD CHEERLEADERS

You're welcome.

dicentra

If … the use of the word "Puto" (faggot) is not homophobic then this is disappointing…

Obviously, in their pronunciation they added another "T" to make it "putto," which is Italian for "cherub."

In Renaissance paintings and such, which should have been obvious from the futbolista context, but these fainting-couch fanatics never stop, do they?

Croatian fans displayed a neo-Nazi banner at the opening match of the tournament against Brazil in Sao Paulo, Russian fans displayed neo-Nazi banners in their first match against South Korea in Cuiaba …

Why on earth would fans bring neo-Nazi displays to a fútbol match? Calling the other team "cherubs," sure, but WTF with Hitler stuff?

Hal

It's getting to the point where i think the Guardian is having a lark. It's all so repetitive they must be generating these precious gems via some feminist outrage algorithm and they have a list of names who agreed to be used as bylines.

Been done elsewhere, sooooooo . . .

Joan

Though, curiously, no such concerns [ageism, disablism] are aimed at the young and able-bodied ladies who’ll be taking part in the Women’s World Cup in Canada, an event mentioned pointedly, three times, in the same article.

That's not how feminism works. ;-)

Henry

Though, curiously, no such concerns are aimed at the ... ladies who’ll be taking part in the Women’s World Cup in Canada, an event mentioned pointedly, three times, in the same article. Or indeed at the Olympics, an event that two years on leaves our Guardianista feeling “warm and fuzzy,” and in which male and female athletes compete separately

Funny that. So it's not the separate competitions that bother her. What could be troubling her?

It couldn't possibly be simple childish jealousy that more people of both sexes are interested in the men's world cup.

Definitely not. Nope

Of course not.

Henry

...oh and another thing..

Alas, men tend to be rather stronger than women, and produce about 20 times as much testosterone, leading to more competition, risk-taking, muscle strength, and probably a few other things that make for fast, exciting football.

Thus, in men vs women football matches, the women tend to lose by approximately 400 - 0. Sorry but they do*

So women won't easily get into a mixed football team. But you see where this is going don't you. When women don't get into England's world cup team, it will be decried as latent sexism/misogyny and Ms Wakefield will be calling for quotas of women in national teams.

She might even get them if the Guardian keep pushing out 20 stupid articles like this every week


* in balance, several times as many boys as girls need remedial lessons in reading at school. Must be all those gender stereotypes making this happen. Not biology or anything.

Robert of Ottawa

The woman's world cup of soccer is to be held in Ottawa next

http://www.fifa.com/womensworldcup/destination/cities/city=3401/

pst314

Let's face it: The feminist objection to men playing sports has the same psychological roots as the Nazi objection to Jews living free and happy lives.

Nikw211

It's getting to the point where I think the Guardian is having a lark.

I find it hard to believe that Silvia Murray Wakefield actually exists – surely someone invented that name either as an anagram for some 'clever' Grauniad staffer in-joke or as a composite pseudonym for three real people who write under that name.

The only other plausible explanation for this article must be that whenever the Graun needs to justify an increase in the price of its ad space, they go about trying to bump up its visitor numbers by writing outrageous scunge like this until the site can't not but light up like a Christmas tree from exasperated readers.

Nikw211

… I mean if she is not only real but also actually believes in the aforementioned outrageous scunge … What has to have happened in your life before you can write that kind of bollocks?

Hal

What has to have happened in your life before you can write that kind of bollocks?

Ehn. I know a number of people who vehemently insist that varieties of communications protocols must always be violated---the demand is that mailing lists are to reply to the list, not to the declared correct reply to sender. I know several people who insist that several people, themselves and others, absolutely must be seen holding positions---and getting paid for 'em---regardless of their regularly demonstrated total incompetence. I know someone who, over several years, claimed to have been a Marine during WWII, having a Mensa level I.Q., claimed to be a descendant of two of the Mayflower colonists, and who claimed that as a Marine he'd stood guard duty on B-52s . . . .

All in all, the only similarity among any of the idiots is that they all insistently remain personally practicing proctologists.

ACTOldFart

As ever, the so-called 'progressives' of the Guardian trail along well behind events in the real world. America, that bastion of enterprise, capitalism and markets, all things that Ms Wakefield no doubt hates, solved the problem of making women's sport popular, exciting and of interest to a wide audience years ago. They simply invented the Women's Lingerie Football League.

Nigel

Steveageddon,

The Americans have followed your advice
http://m.youtube.com/user/LingerieFootball

Naturally, The Guardian is non too pleased
http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2014/jan/10/lingerie-football-men-watch-women-play

Ed Snack

Is it that women cannot be members of a world cup side (or for that matter, ride in the Tour de France) or that of course they can as long as they pass the selection barriers ?

If the latter then the complaint is worse than fatuous.

sk60

wherever there is men’s football, just keep talking about women’s football until everyone around you sees this man-focused football for the weird anachronism that it is.

It's a 'weird anachronism' for the best players of a sport to get the biggest audience. Okay then.

Mr. Saturn

The fact that women teams just can't complete physically with men teams in almost any sport imaginable is obviously a patriarchal conspiracy.

David

It’s a ‘weird anachronism’ for the best players of a sport to get the biggest audience. Okay then.

It reminded me of a feminist blogger and activist named Freethinker, whose blog is sadly now private, who made the usual noises about gender - the “male/female dichotomy” - being merely a “dehumanising” social construct. (And by implication insisting that social expectations regarding gender are never, ever rooted in biological facts and statistical tendencies.) She went on to say,

Men in our country also love to point to ‘strength,’ mental and physical, as a point of difference. And they need to be told that if women were not conditioned into gender-appropriate behaviour that renders their bones and muscles weak from disuse and their minds unassertive and submissive, they would have all the strength.

It was a bold claim, one of many. It’s what men need to be told. Though I somehow doubt that prolonged feminist theorising would miraculously reverse the genders of the most formidable Olympic weightlifters. Or for that matter improve the small-scale tactile acuity of men to exceed that more typically found in women.

Minnow

"footballers are doomed to retire as soon as their wisdom teeth fully descend and disabled people are tacitly excluded ... She hasn't been watching England."

Just repeating that because it's still making me laugh.

I mentioned to some women colleagues recently that women's football would be much more watchable if it were played on a smaller pitch. That wasn't well received. It's true though, even if it is impractical. Solves the 'dunking' problem.

It's funny that women's tennis is an exception, though, because it suffers from the same problem, very slow and boring compared to the men's. But people seem quite happy to watch two athletic women exchange shots from the baseline for 10 minutes at a stretch until one of them becomes exhausted or just distracted by boredom. A smaller court would change and I think it would be easy to do. Mind you, nobody watches tennis except during Wimbledon fortnight, so I guess it may just be a case of getting as much in as possible to last the rest of the year.

Thornavis.

And they need to be told that if women were not conditioned into gender-appropriate behaviour that renders their bones and muscles weak from disuse and their minds unassertive and submissive, they would have all the strength.

Ignoring the boiler plate there is a degree of truth in that as women were often deliberately excluded from certain physical jobs, either to preserve male jobs or because it was considered unfeminine, the agitation to remove women from coal mining in the nineteenth century being an example although now it is presented as a great social advance rather than gender discrimination. When women were allowed into heavy industrial jobs in wartime they were able to do them just as competently as men. However what feminists never seem able to accept is that most women just don't want to do that kind of work and generally choose not to, as always dogmatists come up against the revealed preferences of human behaviour and ignore them.

Greg Allan

Steveageddon...
The games move incredibly slowly, because women can't run.

A former training partner who was the first woman to ever bench press three hundred pounds and was a world class shot putter once told me that the finest compliment she'd ever been paid was being told she ran like a man - because "men run perfectly".

Unlike Silvia Murray Wakefield, who clearly has very limited knowledge of any sport, most elite female athletes DO recognise and acknowledge the physiological advantages men have in sports. This is why many top women prefer to compete against men where the opportunity presents as a part of their own training and preparation. They would rather be chasing men up the straight than beating other women by the length of that straight.

Even in a non contact sport such as track and field good sixteen year old boys regularly surpass womens' world records. Notwithstanding the bleatings of Silvia Murray Wakefield and other like minded feminist fruit cakes this is one area where the gap is actually a chasm.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow - "I mentioned to some women colleagues recently that women's football would be much more watchable if it were played on a smaller pitch. That wasn't well received."

But they should have smaller pitches. They tend to do that in the better youth setups these days, because building up skill is more important than exhausting a 12 year old by making him run for miles as if he was a 26 year old professional athlete.

It's not even impractical - just paint some lines on the grass.

Women's football would be better for the players and spectators if they played to their strengths. Sprinting 100 yards with a ball at her feet before putting in a powerful cross isn't a strength for female players. It's not even a strength for all but the fittest of men, so even the most athletic players get burnt out by their mid 30's.

But instead of making women's football better, its fans seem to think they can just nag people into liking it. And who doesn't love a wagging finger?

Nigel - See, that's the problem.

Feminists complain that nobody wants to watch women's team sports. So men - because it's usually men who solve problems instead of just crying about them - find ways to expand their audience. Feminists then complain that men are watching women's team sports for the wrong reasons.

There's no pleasing some people.

Greg Allan - Yes. At some point in the 20th century, the enormous mass of feminist kvetching coagulated and then imploded into a spacetime singularity under its own gravitational force.

This created a pocket universe where the laws of normal human biology don't exist. Feminists live in this strange universe next door, but they commute to our reality to tell us how sexist we all are.

In the Femiverse, a giant floating stone vagina roams the barren wastelands, exclaiming in its fell voice "THE GUARDIAN IS GOOD! THE PENIS IS EVIL!"

R. Sherman

I eagerly await Ms. Wakefield's op-ed regarding the oppression of basketball, a sport which unjustly rewards those oppressors, who unlike your 5 ft. 6 inch correspondent, were a) genetically blessed with a six ft. 5 inch frame and b) an outside jump shot. Where's my victim group?

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

Perhaps Ms. Wakefield just wants Luis Suarez to bite her?

There is one way in which the women are getting to be like the men, though:

US Women's Team goalkeeper Hope Solo arrested on domestic assault charge

Rob

This article is just "tsk, men" inflated to 2,000 words. It is just a standard incoherent feminist whinge.

Tim Newman

There’s no Jessica Ennis or Victoria Pendleton to aspire to or root...

Funny, an aspiration to root Jessica Ennis (and a German steeplechase, and an American sprinter, and a Czech pole vaulter, and...) was why I watched the Olympics too.

WTP

Speaking of Luis Suarez, what's the deal with Uruguay, football-ish sport, and homovorianism?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1972_Andes_flight_disaster

apparently the roots are deep?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tup%C3%AD_people

Hal

In the Femiverse, a giant floating stone vagina roams the barren wastelands, exclaiming in its fell voice "THE GUARDIAN IS GOOD! THE PENIS IS EVIL!"

Friend: . . . with infinite time and the help of the Tabernacle we tried to solve all of the world's problems.

We failed, of course.

---From Zardoz, paraphrased from general memory, where John Alderton as Friend explains to Sean Connery as Zed the history of the previous 300 years of stagnation . . .

Barb the Evil Genius

And they need to be told that if women were not conditioned into gender-appropriate behaviour that renders their bones and muscles weak from disuse and their minds unassertive and submissive, they would have all the strength.

My daughter has incredibly strong muscles. She uses them to dance, particularly en pointe. Very gender-appropriate; indeed, I don't believe most men are built to dance that way.

Jogo Bonito

Holy steaming piles of crap, Batman! This woman must never have heard of Mia Hamm, who is probably solely responsible for millions of mothers being turned into Soccer Moms of little girls. Are they participating in an "anachronism"?

I believe Bertrand Russell put it best when he said "For Christ's sake woman, STFU!!!"

Darleen

And they need to be told that if women were not conditioned into gender-appropriate behaviour that renders their bones and muscles weak from disuse and their minds unassertive and submissive, they would have all the strength.

Ann Meyers -- an awesome athlete, the first woman to be signed to try out for the NBA ...

She was one of 11 children born to a former pro-basketball player - her older brother David, played basketball for UCLA during the Wooden years, played pro with Milwaukee Bucks. She grew up with a basketball in her hands and stated on more than one occasion she was good because she was always playing against her brothers.

... all that and she couldn't make the NBA team.

(we all went to the same high school ... I graduated 1 year after Dave)

Girls can compete on the same physical level as boys -- up to about 10 or 11 years old.

That's just reality.

David

Somewhat related, the last item here.

Tim Newman

Girls can compete on the same physical level as boys -- up to about 10 or 11 years old.

The best cricketer in our village in Pembrokeshire was a girl - up until she was 15. Used to captain the team up to U18 level. By the time she was 20, she could barely make the 2nd XI. She was much admired for her skills, though.

David Gillies

"In fact, wherever there is men’s football, just keep talking about women’s football until everyone around you sees this man-focused football for the weird anachronism that it is."

I see Silvia Murray Wakefield is doing her bit for gender equality here, since droning on monomaniacally in the pub about one's weird hobby horse until everyone else is sobbing with boredom is usually held to be a male peculiarity.

David

In effect, nagging. How terribly feminist.

Rich Rostrom

An actual data point: Renée Richards (née Richard Raskin), the transsexual tennis player. As a man, he was a pretty good amateur. As a middle-aged woman, she ranked as high as 20th in the world.

Richards was a physician, and noted the physiological effects of the sex change. In Richards' memoir Second Serve, Richards noted that taking female hormones resulted in a substantial loss of upper body strength.

The suggestion of a smaller pitch for women's soccer is interesting. Golf adapts with women's tees, which are closer to the hole. However, with nearly all other sports, it would be costly and inconvenient to have additional specialized playing facilities for women.

mojo

The Americans have followed your advice

http://m.youtube.com/user/LingerieFootball

God, I love this country...

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