No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance...
As I understand it, the law has been used to force American universities to cut male sports teams in order to have equal numbers of women participating in sports. There has been no allowance made for men having a greater interest in sports or for male sports teams having a greater following.
But that's not what's so signicant about Obama's op-ed. Since Title IX was introduced women have come to dominate graduate numbers at American universities. The situation is now as follows:
According to the Census Bureau, 685,000 men and 916,000 women graduated from college in 2009 (the latest year for which statistics have been published). That means 25 percent fewer men received college degrees than women.
So women are now vastly overrepresented at American universities. And what is President Obama's attitude to this? He thinks it's just great:
In fact, more women as a whole now graduate from college than men. This is a great accomplishment—not just for one sport or one college or even just for women but for America. And this is what Title IX is all about.
Having more women than men graduate from college is what Title IX is all about, he writes. We're supposed to believe it's bad - it's discriminatory - if there are more men than women playing sports on campus, but that it's a "great accomplishment" for America if there are 25% more women than men who actually graduate.
And Obama goes on to write:
I’ve said that women will shape the destiny of this country, and I mean it.
We have come so far. But there’s so much farther we can go. There are always more barriers we can break and more progress we can make.
It's at moments like this that you are forced to recognise just how differently the leftist mind perceives reality. Obama's religious feelings are centred on a secular drama in which society must always find the next barrier to break, so that a woman's sex does not limit her power in society. This is the measure of the progress and greatness of a society, and the issue on which a nation's destiny hangs.
The word "equality" is used more as a symbol within this little drama - it refers to the progress of women's power in society rather than to finding a counterpoise between men and women.
There is not a lot of consideration given within such a mindset to how a society might successfully order itself in the long term. There is a great blank, for instance, in considering what role men might have within such an ideologically driven society, or, for that matter, what role the average non-professional, family-oriented woman might have.
I suspect that the longer the mindset endures, the more tensions it will generate. At what point, for instance, do you have to recognise that women are actually advantaged in education rather than disadvantaged? At what point do you have to recognise that Western countries are declining relative to other nations rather than progressing? At what point do you have to recognise that "permanent revolution" doesn't make for a great religion, or that there is more to life than career ambition?