Sports Inequalities

Catie Unger, Staff Writer

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There is a tremendous gender inequality in sports. Women sports players have been fighting for equality for years, but not much has come out of it. They are paid significantly less and broadcasted less than men, but why?

According to Newsweek, the national women’s soccer team makes $99,000 each, given they win 20 games, which is the minimum number of games that they play. Meanwhile, the men’s national soccer team earns $263,320 for doing the exact same thing, winning 20 games. But they would still earn $100,000 for losing all of the 20 games. So if the women’s team won all 20 games, they would still make less than the men if the men lost all 20 games. Sophomore Natalie Daigle stated, “I knew that there was a difference in pay between the men and women sports teams, but I did not realize that it was this much of a difference.” Also when the German men’s national soccer team won the world cup in 2014, FIFA, the Federation Internationale de Football Association, gave them 35 million dollars. However, when the U.S. women’s national team won the World Cup in 2015, they were only awarded 2 million dollars. It is like this for all sports. In basketball, women who are stars in the WNBA make a fraction of what men in the NBA who sit the bench during games make. The difference in pay is massive between the men and women, and it is radically wrong.

As for broadcasting pro sports, the National Women’s Soccer League, NWSL, games get broadcasted on one specific channel, once a week during the soccer season. But MLS, Major League Soccer, teams have games that are broadcasted many days a week on multiple popular channels. Sophomore Deanna Bonsignore commented, “I have been to multiple MLS soccer games and follow the teams, but I don’t follow the NWSL teams or go to any games because I never see any games on TV.” Even with high school sports, attendance for boys sports games usually is significantly more than it is for girls games. Also, have you ever seen a women’s hockey game on TV?

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BLAINE, MN – AUGUST 25: Choate Rosemary Hall Graduates (L-R) Angela Ruggiero, Julie Chu and Hilary Knight of the U.S. Women’s National Hockey Team pose for a portrait on August 25, 2009 at the National Sports Center in Blaine, Minnesota. (Photo by Tom Dahlin/Getty Images)

There is the NHL, The National Hockey League, but only men play in it. It is very popular and televised on multiple channels during the week. But what about the women? There is the NWHL, The National Women’s Hockey League, but is not broadcasted on TV. It is broadcasted on the NWHL website which has very few viewers. Another obvious example of how there is inequality in sports is with football. There is the NFL, which is extremely popular, with millions of fans watching games every week, and there is no women’s team. Football is seen as a men’s sport. However, there are a few leagues for women, but none are well known or televised.

Many women have protested in some way to this inequality. The national women’s hockey team, for example, protested for equal pay, benefits and treatment by boycotting a tournament. Five players from the national women’s soccer team are fighting the U.S. Soccer Federation for equal pay because of the amount of difference. Also Venus Williams, a highly acclaimed tennis player, protested and won equal pay for the other women tennis players at a tournament. However even with these protests, women’s and men’s sports still have a tremendous pay gap.

All in all, there is a major gender inequality in men’s and women’s sports, and it needs to be fixed. The only question is why is it unequal if there is the same amount of time and effort put in by both genders?


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Sports Inequalities