Colleges used to have a male-female ratio of about 60-40, and suddenly, we've discovered it's close to 40-60. Men don't like this change; women don't like it; and colleges don't like it. One cause for this dramatic shift is that colleges perceive applications by women to be better than those submitted by men. But, why is it that women knock at the college admissions office with higher high-school grade-point averages, better essays, and even a bigger variety of extracurricular activities than men? Why do fewer boys show significant interest in academic achievement?
The Wall Street Journal calls this the "boy mystery" that "nobody has solved." We should respond with the famous line attributed to Sherlock Holmes, it's "elementary, my dear Watson." The causes originate back in elementary schools, which are ruled by females and dominated by feminists who make school unpleasant for boys from the get-go. Only 10% of elementary school teachers are men, giving boys the distinct impression that school is not for them.
Elementary school teachers used to understand that boys will be boys. Five- and six-year-old boys are not as able or willing as little girls to sit quietly at a desk and do neat work with pencil and paper. Teachers now look upon boys as just unruly girls. Feminists are hostile to males and to masculine traits such as competitiveness and aggressiveness, and instead reward typical female behaviors such as non-assertiveness and group cooperation.
Teachers cannot make gender go away by pretending that boys do not have an innate masculinity, or by trying to suppress it with ridiculous zero-tolerance punishments, banning sports such as dodge ball and tag, and allowing only playground games without winners. Colleges should be told (by regulation or by statute) that a 50-50 male-female ratio is OK and just common sense.
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