Stereotype can be defined in this way: “To have a set idea about what a particular type of person is like, especially an idea that is wrong.’’
Stereotypes can also be described as a scourge to society. Let’s face it, stereotypes are a strong influence on the racial tension this nation currently faces.
That’s why it is is so encouraging to see the Illinois High School Association will conduct a state tournament series for girls wrestling beginning in the 2021-22 academic year. As reported by Cody Smith in the Sports section published Tuesday by the Daily Journal, Illinois will join 25 other states in allowing such competition. That means the opportunity will soon exist in the majority of U.S. states.
“It’s about time,’’ Coal City wrestling coach Mark Masters told Smith. We couldn’t agree more.
While Title IX barred discrimination in the athletic arena almost 50 years ago, some exceptions still exist, and these exceptions are influenced by stereotypes. Wrestling, after all, is a masculine venture which should be left to those who exude masculinity, right? It has no place for the feminine touch, correct?
This is a preposterous notion. The sooner we rid ourselves of this one-size-fits-all mentality the better off we’ll be. Women can certainly be adept at wrestling and should have the chance to compete.
One who has done it already is Maggie Thorne, a Central High School student who has competed with the boys wrestling program for the past two years and plans to continue with the prospect of a state berth now motivating her. Others have the opportunity to follow in her footsteps. For women who choose to pursue it, welcome to wrestling.