I finally got around to watching last week’s 60 Minutes, which had a segment devoted to Schuyler Bailar, a person who got admitted to Harvard as to swim on its women’s swim team, but who had breast removal surgery over the summer and presented at Harvard asking to swim on the men’s team. Harvard, reeking of political correctness (you can see oleaginous pride oozing off of the interviewed coaches), agreed, which infuriated me. Schuyler, as a woman, would have set breaststroke records deserving of a place on a highly competitive swim team. Schuyler, as a man, is a chubby, hip-heavy slow poke, who routinely comes in last.
Given that I loathe Harvard, why does this infuriate me? Shouldn’t I be cheering anything that lowers Harvard’s standing in the world?
Well, in theory, yes. In fact, though, I think it just stinks that, in the name of political correctness, some deserving young man with good grades and a fast breaststroke couldn’t get into Harvard (presuming, as I do, that such a man exists) because chubby little Schuyler got his place. It seems to me that if Schuyler wants to play with the big boys, Schuyler should also have to play by big boy rules — one of which is, if you’re really slow, you’re not on the team.
As far as I’m concerned, Schulyer’s gender “bait and switch” is tantamount to committing fraud against Harvard, although Harvard is happily complicit in its own victimization. Thinking in terms of fraud, though, has legal ramifications. If there is no reality anymore — in other words, if reality is shaped by our subjective desires rather than by any objective “facts” (and isn’t “facts” such a silly, old-fashioned word?) — we truly have entered a brave new world legally.