Saturday, August 29, 2009

I had no idea

The evening news has been all about the death of Ted Kennedy.  I knew he played an important role in the senate. But I really had no idea how many bills he had passed in his career. I never thought about how long he had served either. It's hard for most people to put up with a job for a few years.  Sheesh, he was fighting for rights for all of us for over 40 years. That's insane.

One of the many things I learned while watching the news was a little thing called Title IX.  Or Title Nine. 

What is Title Nine you ask?  An athletic clothing store for women? Yes. But that's not the Title Nine I'm talking about. Although now I understand why the store is called Title Nine

So what is it? Well, basically it gives girls equal rights to boys, in school and in sports. It went into effect in 1972.  Oh, that Title Nine you say. The one that allows girls to play golf and soccer alongside the boys. Yes!

The actual law says:

"No person in the United States, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program receiving federal financial assistance."

The original law was meant to help the smart girls that wanted to pursue math and science. Not just home-ec.  There is still a lot of controversy about the law - since it only applies to organizations that receive federal funding. Private institutions and clubs are excluded. You can read about it on Wiki. I don't know about you. But I can't imagine why a girl would want to play football. But if she does, and she has the same skills. Why not? Wouldn't be my thing. But who are we to decide what people should do. Right?

It was interesting to watch the reporters interview all the different people that were directly affected by laws he helped form. Thank goodness there are people like him in the world. I'm sure he was a huge influence on junior senators. Hopefully they will follow in his footsteps and do good too. 

RIP Ted.

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