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Today in things that make us scream incoherently

School’s Religious Policy Makes Boys Forfeit Baseball Championship Because Of One Girl On The Opposing Team


Fifteen-year-old Paige Sultzbach didn’t get a chance to play in her school’s baseball championship because the opposing team of boys refused to play her, forfeiting the match instead. Not cool, dudes. 

“Our Lady of Sorrows bowed out of Thursday night’s game against Mesa Preparatory Academy in the Arizona Charter Athletic Association championship,” writes ESPN. “Paige, who plays second base at Mesa Prep, had to sit out two previous games against Our Lady of Sorrows out of respect for its beliefs. But having her miss the championship was not an option for Mesa Prep.”

ESPN writes, “Both schools play in the seven-team 1A division of the ACAA. Our Lady of Sorrows won the Western Division and Mesa Prep won the Eastern Division with an undefeated season.” So what gives? Out Lady of Sorrows declined to speak with press but did issue a statement which said they have a policy prohibiting co-ed sports. I can understand a Catholic school having that policy for their own teams but not enforcing it on other schools when it comes time to play competitively.

According to the report, “The statement also said the school teaches boys respect by not placing girls in athletic competition, where ‘proper boundaries can only be respected with difficulty.’ Our Lady of Sorrows is run by the U.S. branch of the Society of Saint Pius X. The group represents conservative, traditional priests who broke from the Catholic Church in the 1980s.”

I respect religious beliefs but if your boys don’t know the difference between playing sports and trying to hook up, I think you’ve got to try different teaching methods. It’s almost sounds like telling women to cover up so men don’t grope them. No, just don’t grope them. Same thing here – just play sports.

“This is not a contact sport, it shouldn’t be an issue,” said Paige’s mom Pamela Sultzbach. “It wasn’t that they were afraid they were going to hurt or injure her, it’s that (they believe) a girl’s place is not on a field.”

Why was Sultzbach on the boys’ team at Mesa Prep anyway? “In junior high, Paige played softball and volleyball,” writes ESPN. “Because Mesa Prep does not have a girls softball team, she tried out for the boys baseball team and received support from her coach and her fellow teammates.”

“The very idea that such stereotypes are so strong, they’d actually forfeit a game simply because a girl was on the field. That’s ridiculous,” said Lisa Maatz, director of public policy at the American Association of University Women. “Does she have cooties?”

Cooties, indeed. It certainly sounds like the decision makers at the school are stuck in high school themselves. And as Nancy Hogshead-Makar, senior director of advocacy for the Women’s Sports Foundation said, this is a bad lesson going forward in life. ”In real life, these boys are going to be competing against the girls for jobs, for positions in graduate programs or in trade schools. In every other area of their life, they are going to be competing side by side.”

(via ESPN)

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  • http://zadl.org/ Captain ZADL

    The more this kInd of nonsense shows up in the news, the less respect I have for religion as a whole.

  • http://amidstdancers.blogspot.com/ Shard Aerliss

    The lesson I hope but doubt that those boys will be taking from this; sexism is for losers.

  • http://twitter.com/DerekRuiz Derek Ruiz

    SSPX are not Catholics. They call themselves that but they broke away from the Catholic Church.

  • http://twitter.com/mitaukano Kash Mitaukano

    You know you should clarify in the title that this is a SCHISM group of priests which divided from the Catholic Church. Most of us aren’t that stupid and promote co-ed sports. The article title leads the individual to believe that the Catholic Church as a whole supports this kind of behavior. It’s kind of unfair to the group as a whole and makes me as a lesbian, catholic nerd feel as if my religion is being singled out for ridiculous douchebaggery. 

  • http://twitter.com/DerekRuiz Derek Ruiz

    Also I don’t think the Church runs these schools so I don’t think you can even call it a Catholic School.

    As some on who went to Catholic Schools Co-ed play was totally fine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1780916799 Jennifer Dougherty

    Do you know what you call a team that forfeits the state championship game because they refuse to play against a girl?

    Losers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/maude.garner Red Garner

    I totally lol’d and snorted at “cooties, indeed”.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AKJR63UR32BRGNF6HEOPLWYIBE Lily

    When I played in a Catholic co-ed sports league in high school, we actually had to forfeit a game if our team didn’t have ENOUGH girls.

  • Anonymous

    “The statement also said the school teaches boys respect by not placing girls in athletic competition, where ‘proper boundaries can only be respected with difficulty.”

    Ah yes, the age old instead-of-expecting-males-to-take-responsibility-for-their-own-behavior, let’s punish-and-diminish-females-to-make-things-less-’difficult’-for-the-boys. It’s a timeless classic. Respect my ass.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nataliemariesharp Natalie Sharp

     That’s the first thing I thought.

  • Anonymous

    Vote for Ramzpaul for 2012 Miss Black America!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sySVDaCsss

  • http://twitter.com/diefrankenmaus Kate

    Their own argument doesn’t hold water in this case. Baseball is NOT a contact sport. What’s next, guys? Make sure all the girls have class in separate classrooms because boys might touch a girl’s fingertips when passing back papers?

  • Anonymous

    Just so we’re clear, did the actual team forfeit the game, or were they more or less obligated to because of their school’s rules?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bill-Cash/789788744 Bill Cash

    I was on baseball in high school. Personally I dont think a team would forfeit itself on principle. Since I know my high school baseball team would kill to be in a championship. If it was forced on them by the school itself. I know my old team would STRONGLY object to that. And want to play because its the championship. That’s how I see it anyway. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bill-Cash/789788744 Bill Cash

    Its only a contact sport if the runner collides with one of the basemen or catcher. Which doesn’t happen that often. Or if the fielders themselves crash into each other trying to get the ball. But other than that no, baseball is not technically a contact sport. 

  • Kath

    I don’t know, she looks a lot like Jinx from Archie Comics, so maybe they were scared of her? That girl’s dangerous.

  • Adam Whitley

    oh you act like you never read that chapter in leviticus where it says that men can’t play baseball with the womenfolk.

  • Anne Trotter

    Hey, I think this is awesome! If you’re going up against a girl, just quit, guys. Out of respect, of course, but seriously – just quit. Especially when running for political office. 

    Girls, in about 20 years, we’re taking over Congress.

  • Anne Trotter

    You’re right – it would be good if there was more media distinction about this being an extreme sect. It does seem to be feeding the “religious folks is crazy!” news coverage. 

    The thing is… there’s a lot of religious crazy out there these days. And the sane religious folks aren’t saying anything except “don’t lump me in with them!” The sane religious folks are just trying to put distance between them and the crazies, not actively fighting the crazy with sanity. I do feel bad for the nice folks I know who have faith who get some of the lash-back.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_MYC65UZW7OMSYCL4YRFH4XKKKQ Brian

    They are Catholics. Just because they’re not the main, famous kind doesn’t mean they aren’t Catholics.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/M6OECKIX6MADASA2U4DGMFCTR4 chicomdk

    They just didnt want to get beat by a girl 

  • http://twitter.com/JLuVeeGee JLu Vee Gee

    I also wanted to point out that this group isn’t Catholic; it’s a group that broke of from Catholicism.

  • http://twitter.com/JLuVeeGee JLu Vee Gee

    They broke off from the Catholic church.  If you insist that this group is still Catholics; than the Lutherans must be as well.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Billy-Mcbride/100002002858157 Billy Mcbride

    there are a large number of catholic churches. the romans are now “investigating” the girl scouts or something like that. i suppose that means they are through”investigating” the alter boys or something like that. not sayin nutin here, just askin, just askin, billy

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    The group considers themselves Catholic still though, correct? Lutherans do not.

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    It states that in the article but they do consider themselves to be Catholics. They just have no canonical status in the Catholic Church. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/Gorillazfan Emily Hill

    Let them forfeit best to weed out the ignorant ones early

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_VK7U6RFTAUIPW2JR2NGPBP2IYA super

    and what about non religious nonsense?  
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-400_162-57429015/n.y-boy-kicked-off-girls-field-hockey-team-for-superior-play/
    May 7, 2012 10:39 AM
    (AP) GARDEN CITY, N.Y. – He’s too good, and that’s too bad.
    A
    13-year-old New York boy who played field hockey growing up in Ireland
    has been told that after two years as a member of the Southampton High
    School girls’ team, he is now too skilled to qualify for an exemption
    allowing him to compete with — and against — girls next season.
    Keeling
    Pilaro, whose 10 goals and eight assists earned him all-conference
    honors on suburban Long Island — he was the only boy in any league — is
    appealing the decision by the governing body for high school sports in
    Suffolk County, and a lawyer for his family suggests a court battle
    could ensue if the ball doesn’t bounce Keeling’s way.
    An
    appeals committee said it looked only at his skills, not size or
    strength, when upholding the decision to keep him off the field. That
    raises a question of discrimination.
    Keeling’s fight
    appears to be a rare example of a young man seeking to take advantage
    of Title IX, a 40-year-old law enacted to provide women equal access to
    athletic opportunities. There are no boys’ high school field hockey
    teams anywhere on Long Island, or, for that matter, in most of the
    country.
    “It’s really annoying,” the eighth-grader said
    in a recent interview. “I’m just 4-foot-8 and 82 pounds, so I don’t see
    why I shouldn’t be allowed to play. I don’t really care if I’m on a
    girls’ team or a boys’ team, I just want to play.”
    Southampton school administrators agree, but they don’t have the final say.

  • http://twitter.com/GeekLock Dingo

    You are right. Catholics are worse.

  • http://twitter.com/mitaukano Kash Mitaukano

    Then why didn’t you say “Schism Catholics” or “A Fractional Group of Catholics” in the title. I’m Mayor of Wendy’s on foursquare can I now go around saying “I’m the Mayor” because of that will you write an article that refers to me as “The Mayor Of Wendy’s” of course not! Because I am in no way affiliated with Wendy’s. 

  • Anonymous

    I was in a catholic school and my whole family is catholic and this is nonsense. Religions dont exist anymore if there can be this difference from one country to another.

  • Anonymous

    Utter nonsense, Catholic Church is admistrated as a whole if they are not administrated along the rest of the movements they are not Catholic in any sense. The Vatican needs to aknowledge them and for that you need papers and firms and stuff (Thats the principal task of th eVatican, Bureucracy)

    Imagine an state of canada that considers themselfs as “americans”.

    They can be Christians but not Catholics, there is not such thing as what you say, The Schism of the Catholic Church give birth first to the Orthodox from the Otoman Empire and then, after centuries, to the Luterans.

    Thats It. What you got here would be a sect with no religious status

  • Kevin Phillips

    What do you expect from an institution where men are men and ladies are ladies (Our Lady of Sorrows).  Also, a report coming from the ‘ABC’ network of sports does not mean much more than a news article coming from the Clinton News Network (aka-CNN).  Look at it this way-do not go away mad; just go away.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/James-McCormick/705971587 James McCormick

     I know this is so late you probably won’t read this, but that is not nonsense.  Boys/Men should not compete in women/girls leagues because they have a distinct and unfair competitive advantage.  You cannot have fair competition if, for example, an outstanding male runner races in a women’s event.  If a girl/woman competes in a male league, she has no advantage.  It is analogous to boxing.  You are always free to step ‘up’ in class, e.g. a middleweight fighting as a heavyweight.  The alternative is not acceptable.  Imagine if Ali in his prime decided he wanted to fight as a middleweight! 

    Its too bad for this kid that no male leagues are available.  But it doesn’t justify his competing in a girl’s league.

  • http://www.facebook.com/randy.pare Randy Paré

    I don’t really understand why the author conflates the gender separation of competitive sports with religious bigotry. Backwards religious types certainly need to be ignored.. but that has nothing to do with wanting competitive sports to exists separate for each gender. I mean seriously – do we want to see sports with contact, where size and strength are very important, where the potential for violence always exists – to be contested between the sexes?

    Couple of observations: this was not a kiddie league game – these were teenagers playing Div 1A high school baseball. Safety is a real concern. Also – this had NOTHING to do with Catholic Church as the sect that runs this school split from the Church long, ago.

    BTW – there is contact in baseball: charging home plate? Not a religious issue – a safety issue. There is nothing wrong with separate leagues for each gender – as a general rule it makes more sense.