Hundreds of major league baseball (MLB) games are televised nationally every year with the players being paid an average salary of 1 million dollars. Depending on their skill and how eager an organization wants a player it can go up from there. Did you know that there was a pro softball league? Most likely not, the softball league consists of 6 teams with the average salary below 100 thousand dollars. Female athletes are paid 40% of what male athletes are paid. Females work just as hard, if not harder than males to prove themselves in the world of sports. Growing up in an athletic household and watching sports on TV, I only ever saw men represented unless it was time for college softball season.
Females deserve to be paid for their skills in the same way that men do. The average salary of a male in the NBA (national basketball association) is 4.5 million dollars, the average salary of a female basketball player is only $72,000. The top 5 earners in the NBA are all over 20 million dollars, compare that to the top 5 female earners and the difference is over 18 million dollars. Being a true sports fan, you should be interested in more than just male sports. As a female athlete, we are extremely underrepresented on large platforms. Unlike baseball that has multiple channels on tv, professional softball is only streamed online. Select college softball teams are shown on sports channels like ESPN but only in the last few years have been getting more air time. Females deserve more recognition in everything but especially in sports.
Females must jump through more hoops than males to be taken seriously, when they are finally to where they want to be, they are not recognized for it as if they would be if they were male. I am not bashing male athletes here, I am happy that they are recognized and paid well for their abilities, I am just trying to show that females deserve to be paid more equal and be recognized for their hard work. Females have been under-appreciated and undervalued even though they are working just as hard as males. Regarding media coverage of sports, the gender imbalance is painfully obvious—beyond the Williams twins and Katie Ledecky, how many national female athletes can you name? The lack of attention that televised, print and social media grant to women in sports leads to a cycle that aggravates gender inequality and sexism. Collectively, men and women, need to do more about gender equality. We need to pave the way for young girls, just as we do boys. There should be no difference in sports, the workplace, or in life.
When it comes down to it, women can hang in a male-dominated field. Sports aren’t just about boys being boys, sports are about amazing athletic ability that deserves to be seen. Women aren’t discounted from this by any means, so let’s change the game. The stereotype that women are poor athletes, that to mess up or fail is to “play like a girl,” permeates almost all of women’s athleticism. It’s this argument that has been used for decades as an excuse to ignore women’s work. For the media, it’s easy to dismiss covering something if you can dismiss the athleticism involved. It remains evident that there currently still exists an enormous gap between how the media treats women and men when it comes to athletics. Such difference in treatment can lead to extraordinarily damaging effects that not only support sexism and inequality, but also psychological and emotional effects on female athletes at all levels. Women must work harder to prove themselves in almost any situation, when it comes to sports it’s not different. Women deserve much more respect in the sports industry.