August 27th, 2012

Gender Parity

In view of the current debate about gender parity at SF conventions, there's something I didn't mention about the horse show yesterday. Eighteen classes (or thereabouts; it's a bit hard to count exactly, as some classes were merged or cancelled). Average of five entrants per class (approx.). Let's assume the average person entered 2.5 classes. That makes a total of 36 contestants, of whom two were male -- a bit over 5%. And of course since I'm writing about it because I was there, that actually biasses the sample in favour of male participation -- it would have been 1 in 35 without me.

This is a pretty typical state of affairs. And there seems to be no disquiet with or debate about this state of affairs -- it's simply accepted that that's how things are. When it's mentioned at all in horse magazines, it's nearly always "How can I get my significant other interested?", and doesn't address any wider issues of gender parity.

(At the highest levels of riding, the gender balance is much more even, which is of course also an interesting subject for debate.)