Mesa Preparatory Academy and Our Lady of Sorrows Academy were supposed to meet for the Arizona Charter Athletic Association’s 1A state championship Thursday night. Our Lady of Sorrows Academy forfeited because Mesa Prep’s starting second baseman is 15-year-old Paige Sultzbach. In case you couldn’t tell by the name … (via FS Arizona):
Our Lady of Sorrows Academy, a fundamentalist Catholic school in Phoenix, declined to play Mesa Prep because of a strict parish policy prohibiting participation in co-ed sports. The school is affiliated with the U.S. branch of the Society of Saint Pius X, a group of conservative priests who broke away from the Catholic Church in the 1980s over church reforms.
They sound like a fun bunch. Our Lady of Sorrows’ official reason for screwing their own kids out of the possible lifelong memory of winning a championship in high school?
“Teaching our boys to treat ladies with deference, we choose not to place them in an athletic competition where proper boundaries can only be respected with difficulty,” the statement said. “Our school aims to instill in our boys a profound respect for women and girls.”
What better way to teach boys respect for girls than by telling them women aren’t equals. Mesa Prep twice sat Sultzbach earlier in the season so that Our Lady of Sorrows wouldn’t forfeit, but when they tried to stick with her in the championship game, the game ended up canceled. For some strange reason, Mesa Prep thought Sultzbach had earned the right to play.
Sultzbach’s mother, Pamela, told the Arizona Republic: “This is not a contact sport, it shouldn’t be an issue. It wasn’t that they were afraid they were going to hurt or injure her, it’s that (they believe) that a girl’s place is not on a field.”
You’ll have to excuse me if I don’t have anything nice to say about Our Lady of Sorrows, but they wouldn’t see it anyway. There is no internet in the 18th century. Somebody needs to ship these people a copy of The Mighty Ducks or Little Giants.