The Left Gets Into Sports (Not To Play)
Political correctitude — the left’s desire to homogenize, regiment, and equalize society, and hence to tyrannize us, impoverish us and make life dreadfully boring — has invaded professional sports. (Sports is a strange place for egalitarianism, being one of the last refuges for lawful inequality.) The feminists are complaining that men got paid more for playing tennis at Wimbledon. They think that women should be paid the same. Many sportscasters think the men should be paid more because they are better players. That’s ridiculous. Personally, I think the women should be paid more.
The men serve so fast it is often impossible to return the serve and there are few long rallies — the essence of exciting tennis. Women, being weaker, have less fearsome serves and therefore longer rallies. The women’s game is more interesting to watch because they’re worse. Also, the best male players, now that Agassi is playing like a member of AARP, are bland. Strong, silent types are great in film, but not in sports. Sports is entertainment, not mere mechanical motion. In other words, economic value is subjective, not objective. Billie Jean King beat Bobby Riggs, but we tuned in to see Riggs, not Billie. We watched McEnroe against Borg not to see the silent Swede, but the loudmouth jerk from New York.
Tennis players should be paid what promoters are willing to pay them and the players are willing to accept. Ultimately, professional athletes will tend to be paid according to their ability to attract television viewers, television being the main source of revenue. If women’s tennis is more interesting, and based on last year’s U. S. Open ratings, I am not the only one who thinks so, then women will tend to be paid more. When that happens, it will be fun to watch the feminists complain about gender inequality.
The other thing the levelers are angry about is privacy. Leftists love privacy but they hate private clubs. They have currently parked their envy and resentment at the Augusta National country club which they claim is sexist and has no female members. Although the club now has black members, that is not enough. One critic even charged that the black members of Augusta are racists too against their fellow blacks. What is puzzling is why people want to join a club filled with people who don’t like them. No one with self-respect would want to join a club that would not take him as a member.
Tiger Woods, a shrewd businessman, defended private property rights: "they’re entitled to set up their own rules the way they want them. It would be nice to see everyone have an equal chance to participate if they wanted to, but there’s nothing you can do about it.” The left, however, is never satisfied to let things be. So long as there is any possibility that scenarios exist which could lead to the tiniest amount of human inequality or unhappiness — in other words, where any individual freedom still exists — the left will be there.
Those who believe the state should be allowed to regulate private clubs should consider that the ultimate private club is marriage. When the moment is right, the left will strike there too with an anti-discrimination law: "In selecting a partner for marriage, no person shall discriminate on the basis of age, race, sexual preference, religion, height, weight, fertility, health, personality, wealth, or appearance."
July 23, 2002
James Ostrowski is an attorney practicing at 984 Ellicott Square, Buffalo, New York 14203; (716) 854-1440; FAX 853-1303. See his website at http://jimostrowski.com.