So I read about this story a while ago–the Iowa boy who refused to wrestle a girl at the state championships–and I wasn’t that interested, but yesterday I read this opinion piece by Mona Charen, and now I’m curious because she makes a couple of unsupported assertions. Granted, they probably went unsupported in the piece because they seem to be based on common sense, but sometimes reality does defy common sense–or at least people in real life defy it, or deny it, or whatever. I must admit that I know next to nothing about the sport of wrestling, and absolutely nothing about the realities of co-ed wrestling–the situation on the ground, or on the mat, as it were. That’s why I’m opening the questions up to my blog readership–all twelve of you–hoping to get more information on which to base an opinion. Because since I can’t eat, it looks like I will be forced to spend my free time forming opinions on things that don’t really matter to me.
The first assertion Mona Charen makes is that boys are at a tactical disadvantage in co-ed wrestling because they can’t touch the girls’ breasts, but the girls can touch the boys’ chests all they want/need to. Theoretically, a boy might hold back on his best moves for fear of accidentally touching the no-touch zone and thereby getting slapped with a sexual harassment charge. That makes sense, doesn’t it? But is it really true? First of all, in co-ed wrestling, are the girls’ breasts really off-limits? Second, do the girls really have an expectation that their breasts aren’t going to get touched at some point? Third, how much do the boys find themselves touching each others’ breasts? How much breast-touching happens as a matter of course in wrestling? I just don’t know. Given that girls have been wrestling on co-ed teams for at least 20 years, one would think that this issue would have cropped up at some point–if it’s an issue. Which brings me to fourth, has a boy wrestler ever been disciplined for touching a girl wrestler’s breast? The information has to be out there somewhere, but something tells me that “co-ed wrestling sexual harassment” isn’t something I want to Google.
Mona Charen’s second assertion is that contrary to what all these egalitarian-minded folks claim, co-ed wrestling is necessarily sexual because teenagers are always thinking about sex. First, is it true that teenagers are always thinking about sex? Sure, they think about it a lot. Boys, especially, I’ve heard, think about sex a lot–every few seconds, according to some reports. But always, even while wrestling? Wouldn’t that lead to a lot of sexual confusion among single-sex wrestlers? Second, does it matter at all if the girl you’re wrestling is attractive or not? It’s been claimed that sex is the last thing on these wrestlers’ minds because wrestling is just so, so very physically and mentally challenging that there just isn’t time or energy to think about sex while you’re doing it. But if the girl you’re wrestling is really attractive (to you), is it really impossible that there could be anything sexual about full-body contact in that context? I’m not trying to be a smart-ass. I’ve just never engaged in non-sexual wrestling, so I honestly don’t know, and I need you all to enlighten me.
Personally, I’m old-fashioned and tend to think that if my son were a wrestler, I’d rather he refused to wrestle girls. Unless he were in some kind of death match with an evil girl villain. Those types should always be foiled, and if it means you have to be a little less of a gentleman, well, that’s just how it goes. But I think evil girl villains are more likely to be into martial arts. At least that’s the way it seems to be in the movies. Kick-boxing girls are hot, btw. There’s nothing non-sexual about that.
In totally unrelated news, this was this morning’s poll on National Review Online:
Mike Huckabee Suggests He’ll Be More Inclined to Run for President if His Book Does Well. Does This Make You More Likely or Less Likely to Buy It?
Results so far: 5% More Likely, 95% Less Likely
I voted Less Likely, even though there technically isn’t a way I could be less likely to buy his book. It’s the principle of the thing. But that’s a subject for another day.
Let’s talk wrestling!