There are few more galling feelings for a responsible adult than being patronised. So why do feminists not just tolerate it, but actually invite it?

The very people who declare that they are ‘stronk wahmen’ who don’t need no man too often are the first to run crying to Big Daddy, demanding a leg-up because they’re apparently too pathetic to make it on their own.

Fortunately, very few women are stupid and pathetic enough to be feminists.

The principal of Australia’s largest private school for girls has ­described as “outrageous” the ­decision by the University of Technology Sydney to lower entry standards for female students who want to take STEM courses.

As she rightly says, this is a tacit concession to the spurious notion that girls just aren’t up to the academic challenge.

Dr [Kate] Hadwen was asked for her opinion about the program by one of her students during a Women and Education event hosted by The Australian for International Women’s Day.

Dr Hadwen replied: “It’s outrageous. The thinking is to try and encourage girls into STEM. But I just think that it’s absolutely saying women need help. We don’t need help. We’re great as we are, thanks very much…You have to earn your place there … I’m a believer in that.”

What’s worse is that such condescending schemes, far from ‘helping’, are far more likely to set up their beneficiaries for failure. Pitting a reasonably intelligent person against a class full of geniuses only ends up discouraging them. Affirmative action education policies might sound ‘fair’ to some, but the grim reality is that they produce worse outcomes.

As Charles Murray puts it, “We tried to remove the barriers[…]and inadvertently built a trap”.

It’s also noticeable just how one-way these ‘affirmative action’ policies really are.

Women comprise half of all university students, but they don’t tend to do the courses that are still seen as “male” such as engineering, IT and building and construction. Men don’t do the courses seen as “female” either: arts and communications.

So where are the programs encouraging boys into ‘female’ subjects? Why aren’t boys being given a leg-up into Education (70% female), Health and Medicine (65% female), and especially fields like Obstetrics (85% female) or Immunology (74% female)?

In fact, why is there any need at all to boost the numbers of female STEM students, when females already outnumber males in Natural and Physical Sciences (50.1%)? Clearly there is no real barrier to girls studying science subjects: if they shy away from Engineering or IT, might it just possibly be because they’re just not interested?

Although there may be some merit in making feminists take remedial maths classes, given how utterly clueless they are about statistics.

Given that girls in fact now outnumber boys across the board in university enrolments, it’s clearly time to stop patronising girls and pretending that they’re just not up to the challenge. It’s a lie that insults girls and disadvantages boys.

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