Title IX is a specific part of the 1972 amendments to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It implies that there should be no exclusion of anyone from participation in any activity, education program, or getting federal assistance as a matter of gender discrimination. President Richard Nixon signed the amendments into law in June of 1972 and led to many positive changes in the sporting and education spectrums. The modifications were made to enhance gender equality and achieve more equitable in American society. Title IX led to more participation of women in sports activities, granted them more access to events previously dominated by men, led to the USA’s international success in sports, eradicated educational stereotypes, and boosted the fight for equality in the American society.
Only a Few Women Participated in Sports
Before the passing of Title IX, only a few women participated in sports, especially at the college level. Most factors encouraging participation favored men and did not consider girls. For instance, sport-based scholarships by the government for students to join colleges mostly existed only for boys. Despite girls being talented in sports, they did not get an opportunity to enter college and advance their abilities to a professional level. The inequality in offering scholarships discouraged them, girls, to pursue sports and limited their participation (Melnick 32). Lack of hope for the future in sports made those in high school loose interest and viewed games as a waste of time. However, upon the enactment of Title IX, girls became more interested in sports and began to see opportunities and have hope. The number of girls participating in various sports dramatically increased. Therefore, the amendments created a positive impact by encouraging more girls to engage in games.
Gender Stereotyping of Sporting Activities
Although few women were engaging in sports before Title IX was passed, they only involved in limited activities. Gender stereotyping of sporting activities was rampant, and some games were seen as a reserve for men. For instance, whereas women took part in athletics, basketball and boxing were dominated by men. It took several years after the amendments for women to begin professionally playing for the previously male-dominated sports. As an illustration, it was until 1996, when the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) was founded (Blumenthal 24). It took more than two decades for women to get professional access to the sport despite their male counterparts having played since 1946. Currently, the WNBA is a pride of the nation and is known worldwide. It offers a wide range of employment opportunities to many people and entertains many fans across even beyond the borders of the United States. It is an embodiment of the advantages created by Title IX.
A comparison between the success of the USA in international tournaments before and after passing Title IX reveals that the nation became more prosperous after more women began competing in various competitions. For instance, women significantly contribute to the success of the US Olympics team. Further, the USA women football team has won the world cup several times, whereas their male counterparts have never achieved such an accomplishment. Sportswomen have made the USA be internationally recognized as a hub of sporting talent (Ware 48). If Title IX had had not been passed, such women would not have had the opportunity to showcase their talents and represent the nation abroad. Therefore, the amendments were highly advantageous to the country.
Karen Blumenthal. Let Me Play The Story of Title IX: The Law That Changed the Future of Girls in America. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2005.
Bonnette, Valerie McMurtie and Mary Von Euler. Title IX and Intercollegiate Athletics How it All Works–in Plain English. Good Sports Incorporated, 2018.
Melnick, R. Shep. The Transformation of Title IX Regulating Gender Equality in Education. Brookings Institution Press, 2018.
Ware, Susan. Title IX: A Brief History with Documents. Waveland Press, 2014.