High school cheerleaders must now cheer for girls' teams as often as for boys' teams thanks to federal education officials' interpretations of Title IX, the civil rights law that mandates equal playing fields for both sexes. According to The New York Times, almost no one directly involved wants this -- not the cheerleaders, not the fans, not the boys' teams, and not even the girls' teams. But it doesn't matter: The law coerces cheerleaders to cheer at girls' games.
Of all the myths that surround Left-Right differences, one of the greatest is that the Left values liberty more than the Right. Regarding a small handful of behaviors -- abortion is the best example -- this is true. But overwhelmingly, the further left one goes on the political spectrum, the greater the advocacy of more state control of people's lives.
That is why, with the exception of Nazism -- which was an acronym for National Socialism but, rightly or wrongly, because it was race- and nationalism-based and because it allowed private enterprise, Nazism has been generally considered a far-right, not far-left, doctrine -- nearly all totalitarianism of the 20th century was on the Left.
By definition, the moment one crosses from center to left, one accepts more government control of people's lives. Therefore, the further left society moves, the more there is government control over its citizens' lives. It is astonishing that this obvious fact is not universally acknowledged and that the Left has somehow successfully portrayed itself as preoccupied with personal liberty with regard to anything except sexual behavior and abortion.
Taxation is an obvious example. It is difficult to imagine greater government control of a person's life than forcing the person to give half or more of his honorably earned money to the state under threat of being imprisoned. All rational people acknowledge the need for taxes -- who other than the state should pay for police, roads and national defense, and serve as the last resort for the truly helpless? But all rational people should equally acknowledge that the greater percentage of one's money the state forcefully confiscates, the less liberty the individual has.
But the single greatest example is law. The means by which the state exerts control over the individual is law. As with taxes, the more laws, the less individual liberty. And just as rational people acknowledge the need for taxation, all rational people appreciate society's need for laws. But just as taxes increase the further left one moves, so, too, the number of laws passed increases.
Dennis Prager is a SRN radio show host, contributing columnist for Townhall.com and author of his newest book, “The Ten Commandments: Still the Best Moral Code.”