Gender Inequality in sports

Alex Palmieri – General Assignment Reporter

Women and men that play professional sports should get similar amounts of money regardless of gender, or at least that is what Shamika Smith said.

“It is unfair,” said Smith, junior public health major. “I think we are at a year where we should be making progress.”

Smith said progress has been made because there are a lot more women playing sports. Smith said even though this is the case, not enough money gets distributed to women in sports.

She added that women are just as capable of earning the same wages as men and wants to see equality soon.

“The way I look at it is,” said Smith, “it’s the same game, different gender, but the women get less money. It just doesn’t make sense to me.”

Smith said the fanbase for women is not as big as the fan base for men. Due to this, Smith said men get more money. Though women have good physical ability, Smith said women cannot perform many of the physical attributes that men can do.

“I think men are more gifted at sports,” said Smith. “But I want to see the day women get paid more and treated the same in sports. Only time will tell.”

Nikki Fuentes, sophomore chemistry major, said TV stations show commercials that advertise mainly men. Because of all the success men have, Fuentes said it draws bigger crowds and leads to more currency for men in sports.

Fuentes noted that gender inequality is a big issue in the sports world.

“Men get more revenue,” said Fuentes. “This is why they will get more money than women.”

Fuentes said she hopes the day comes soon where gender equality is not an issue anymore. She added that if more people start to view WNBA or women’s tennis games, it would be a step in the right direction.

“Women just don’t get enough attention,” said Fuentes. “In 15 years it would be nice if we make the same as men in the sports industry. I sure hope it happens.”

William Scott, sophomore accounting major, said it is unfair for women to get paid so little compared to men in professional sports. Scott added that there is one major factor he does not like in professional women sports – he does not like the discrimination women face.

Scott said that women can get paid as much as men within a few years to come.

“Ronda Rousey, Venus and Serena Williams,” said Scott, “are all changing their professional sport for the better. These people can be the reason why women will eventually get paid more money and stop the gender inequality.”

A Women’s Sports Foundation found the minimum salary for a WNBA player in 2015 was $38,913, and the maximum salary was $109,500. For an NBA player in 2015, the minimum salary was $525,093, and the maximum salary was $16.4 million.

Isabel Skarzynski, graduate assistant in the women’s studies program at SCSU, said sports should not be classified. Skarzynski made note that when someone says the word sport, everyone automatically thinks of men.

“People look at women athletes as moms and models,” said Skarzynski.

Skarzynski said that women sports do not have a lot of public followers or sponsors. Yet, some people do not view women as athletes and it is because nobody really follows women sports, she said.

“The main point is,” said Skarzynski, “women don’t want to be better than men, we just want to be equivalent to them. I would hope we see gender equality in sports in my lifetime.”

Photo Credit: khrawlings


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