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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


OPINION: In the world of super fans, women face double standards

Rebecca Marie Sasnett
A UA fan supports the Wildcats with a hand gesture and paint during Arizona’s season opener against UNLV at Arizona Stadium on Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. Arizona won 58-13 against UNLV. Anu Solomon broke the freshman passing yards record with 425 yards. Photo taken on Monday, Aug. 29, 2014. Photo by: Rebecca Marie Sasnett / The Daily Wildcat

When men are fans of sports teams, they can dress up, paint their faces and be upset that their team lost. When women are fans of music artists, they are ridiculed for dressing up for concerts, staying up for new releases and being emotional when they go to shows. This double standard is alarming and ridiculous.

When football playoffs were going on prior to the Super Bowl, men were getting absurdly upset at their teams, and some even went as far as breaking their TVs. A woman would never be able to be that hysterical because they would be met with scoffs and rolled eyes. Men are allowed to be obsessed with their favorite things, while women are met with teasing. 

Most sports fans are male; 48% of men are avid fans, while a mere 19% of females are avid fans. At the same time, only 13% of males are not interested in sports, and 34% of women are not as well. More men like sports, but when women express their liking, they face pushback. Women listen to more Billboard Hot 100 artists, which are mainly pop artists. About 4 out of 5 women are interested in musicians such as BTS and P!nk according to Cloud Cover Music demographic survey. Bella Klein, a UA sophomore, said, “There’s a certain stigma for girls who enjoy mainstream, popular artists as if people don’t believe that they can genuinely enjoy those artists.” Women are listening to more popular music than men but cannot do it without having to defend their reasons for listening. 

There are different words used to describe fans, some of which are crazy, obsessive and devoted. I have never seen a man described as “crazy” or “obsessive,” I’ve only seen women described with those negative connotations. Men can paint their whole bodies in their teams’ colors, but women cannot watch every Austin Butler movie without being mocked. 

I am a Taylor Swift fan and had some of her posters in my room. During the early parts of the pandemic, while my high school classes were online, some boys in my class pointed out my posters and laughed about them in the comments. The boys in my class had many posters, and people could see memorabilia in their Zoom cameras. Nobody said a word about what was in their background. It is annoying that I could not show my room without being made fun of. I had to dial back my love for a musician in order to not to be teased.

If women are fans of teams or sports in general, they are asked to name every player. If they fail, they are called “fake fans.” Women aren’t allowed to like anything without being shamed. If they like sports, they have to know everything about it. If they like certain music artists, they are poked fun at for enjoying “girly” things. Women cannot win. 

I think people who are fans of sports or pop culture should only be called fans regardless of gender. The things that make a person happy should not be looked down upon but be looked at as another thing that makes them, them. 

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Kelly Marry
Kelly Marry

Kelly Marry (she/her) is a sophomore studying journalism and public relations. She loves to read and travel in her free time.

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