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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Mailbag: Sept. 8

Argument for women’s sports ticket sales unfounded

I found the opinion piece in Friday’s paper “”Wilma who?”” so naive and devoid of any insight on the issue of gender and sports that I’m surprised it was printed. The pricing scheme of the basketball tickets is not some kind of conspiracy to repress women courtesy of Arizona Athletics, but rather a reflection of what they have calculated people will pay in order to watch our women’s basketball team. Raising the price may seem like a noble gesture in the name of equality, but all that would really do is cause attendance to drop even further. Our biased views in favor of the men’s basketball team are partially due to social constructs in regards to gender roles, but arguably more due to the fact that we have historically had an exceptional men’s basketball team. Our softball team, a women’s softball team, has a higher pricing tier for tickets than our men’s baseball team. If our softball program weren’t as strong as it is, Arizona Athletics would not be able to charge those prices.

A more disturbing trend in regards to female athletes is their representation in the media. Female athletes gain more notoriety based on their physical appearance than any level of athletic prowess. They are sexualized in magazines, ad campaigns and even newspaper coverage at a level far beyond male athletes. Take a moment to reflect on famous contemporary female athletes, and then think about the percentage that has done a spread for Maxim or Playboy. Worse still, studies have shown that female athletes that tend to be more androgynous in appearance do not receive as much press coverage as their more feminine counterparts regardless of how good they may be. One could write for days about sexism in athletics, but “”Wilma who?”” is a misguided exercise in blame.

Scott Rising

retailing & consumer sciences junior

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