Monday, June 25, 2012

Title IV, Women's Sports, Patsy Mink

 Play Ball !
  I Am Woman by Helen Reddy on Grooveshark
 "You can discover
 more about a person 
in an hour of play
 than in a year 
of conversation." 


" Champions
 keep playing
 until they get it

 Billie Jean King

behind the athlete you've become 
and the hours of practice 
and the coaches who have pushed you
 is a little girl
 who fell in love with the game
 and never looked back... 
 play for her. " 

 Mia Hamm
 (born on March 17, 1972)

Congresswoman Patsy T. Mink (left),
 Mme. Nguyen Thi Binh, Foreign Minister 
of South Vietnam (center), 
and Congresswoman Bella Abzug (right) 
meeting outside of Paris, France, 
April 21, 1972.
 Library of Congress, 
Patsy T. Mink Papers, Manuscript Division.

Patsy Matsu Takemoto was born
 1927, Dec. 6  at Paia
 on the island of Maui

She attended Maui High School
 and in her Junior year, Patsy won her first
 of many elections
 to become student body president.  

Unremarkable today, but Patsy was, 
according to Wikipedia
 "the only female who had ever showed ambition
 for student office in the school's history, 
something that was unheard of at the time. . ."  

Not to mention that 
 ". . .   the month before the election,
 Honolulu was attacked by Japan. 
As a consequence, most of the student body
 was uncomfortable with anything 
that was Japanese-oriented. "  

Nevertheless, she won a tight election, 
graduating in 1944 
as class valedictorian.

" Miss Takemoto moved to Honolulu 
where she attended
 the University of Hawaii at Mānoa.
 My Alma Mater.
 She later transferred
 to the University of Nebraska 
where she once again faced discrimination.
The university had a long-standing
 racial segregation 
policy whereby students of color
 were forced to live in different dormitories 
from the white students. This annoyed Mink,
 and she organized and created a coalition . . . 
her coalition successfully lobbied 
 to end the university's segregation policies. "

 Patsy moved back to Honolulu
 to prepare for medical school. 
She received bachelor's degrees in zoology
 and chemistry from  UH.
 However in 1948, 
none of the twenty medical schools
 to which she applied would accept women. 

A disappointed Takemoto decided 
the best way to force medical schools
 to accept women would be through 
the judicial process. 

She set her sights on law school 
and was admitted to the
 University of Chicago Law School,
 which educated women from its inception in 1902.
 (She was not the only woman in the class.)
Miss Takemoto obtained her juris doctor degree
 in 1951.  And one thing more; 
it was at law school that Miss Takemoto
 met hydrologist John Mink (1924–2005), 
who was to become her husband
 and lifelong partner.

 Patsy Mink served in our Hawaii legislature,
 (Territorial as well as after Statehood)
as well as the US Congress, 
and died here at home in Honolulu 
on  Sept. 28 2002.
current Hawaii Governor,
 Neil Abercrombie, said of her:
  ‘She never thought for a moment 
of not working with people 
who didn’t agree with her 

40 years ago this week,
 on JUNE 23, 1972, 
 a portion of the Educational Amendments 
enacted by our US Congress included
Title IX, 
just 37 words written by Patsy Mink, 
stating that:

 " 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- "

Congress named the Title IX Amendment
 of the Higher Education Act
 the "Patsy T. Mink
 Equal Opportunity in Education Act".

Since that time,
 participation in school sports 
has INCREASED for girls 90%,
 as you might expect,
 but participation among boys
 has increased too.

When I was in elementary school, 
sports were a boy thing.  
Girls watched,
 or played other games.  
A girl who did play sports
was called a "Tom Boy." 
 [The tribulations of  "Sissy Boys"
 will be discussed at a later time]

When I see Carissa Moore surf, 
WNBA athletes shoot 3 pointers, 
or happy young girls 
REALLY competing 
at sports they love. . . 
when I see young women
 who are police officers, or in military service
and who are not the EXCEPTIONS
 in build & temperament 
that the pioneers of my day 
HAD to be
 to break into those fields, 
 I think of Patsy Takemoto 
all those years ago, 
way out in the country
 on Maui.

 to all the women
and men
 who opened doors!  

Now that we have all
 played in the sunshine,
 and won championships
 and gold medals, 
we will never send our daughters 
back inside again.

Isn't that GREAT!

 Thanks for looking in-
Chime in with a comment

                    Warmly, cloudia