Personally I would be insulted if scores were "normailized" so that the best advanced masters were shooting 1000 golf just so we would feel better about our ratings.
That is not what I'm saying. I'm saying there are women who are
shooting 1000 golf, expending the same amount of effort and skill in the game as a man throwing 1000 golf, but their results against men's results are only allowing them to be rated 925. I think that's not fair, and I think it also possibly makes some women take less interest in the sport if they know they will never conquer Everest, they will never be 1000 rated, because it's only men who are king of the mountain.
And since there are so few women in the sport, I'm also wondering if a separate rating system would draw more in. In fact, that's my chief concern. No one can refute that we have too few women in the sport. Why is that? Is one of the reasons that we seem to cater to men too often? Is an example of that the rating system, which offers the 1000 rating to men only? Do some women see that and implicitly understand, oh, yes, another sign this is mostly a man's sport.
Now I understand that some women might initially be offended at a separate rating system. I'm seeing that in Discette's posts. So it makes me wonder if a separate rating system would do more harm than good. But I just go back to the idea that if you gave men As, Bs, and Cs in a Phys Ed class for weightlifting, say, and gave women who put in the same effort but whose results were less so they only received Bs, Cs, and Ds, then wouldn't you consider a woman's grade scale and shift everything up a letter grade for them? Why would it be different here? Why wouldn't that be more fair? I haven't heard an answer to this point yet.
A separate rating system would not be condescending, no more than Blue Par and White Par are condescending, no more than amateur tee pads are condescending. As Chuck says, in regular golf, women have women's tee pads -- that's not considered condescending, either.
So can we take a look at this from a less personal point of view and try to think of a group response? Objectively, does anyone think women as a group, who are currently playing, would on average be just as happy, or even happier, with a separate rating system? Certainly you can find individual women who are both for and against, but I'm asking if this would be seen more positively by the group. And would a new group, women who are new to the sport (my reason for even debating this), possibly like a separate rating system even better?
No one can really say yes to these questions, but if the answer is "maybe", then I think a separate rating system should at least be considered and debated by the board. (How to get this brought up, I have no clue, even given Chuck's earlier post. Who's the contact for the women's committee? How do you get the board to bring up something for consideration?)
If the answer, however, is "no" to both of my questions, then it makes me wonder if everyone also thinks we should just do away with amateur tee pads, and do away with everything below Gold par, and for that matter, make everyone play Open and get rid of Intermediate and Recreational divisions... Are Gold par and Open play the only true standards, and everything else considered to be necessary evils?