By Melanie Turkowitch
It’s very clear that there’s a difference between how Americans view and judge female athletes versus male sports figures. There’s a wide gap on how we idolize both men and women athletes. The media tends to be gender biased when writing stories and during interviews and that often shifts the focus and the purpose of the story.
Most recently there have been many gender biased remarks towards female athletes competing in the 2016 Rio Olympics. The Chicago Tribune referred to bronze medalist Corey Cogdell-Unrain as “The Wife Of The Bears Lineman” in their headline. Cogdell is more than an wife of a NFL linesman. She is a three-time olympian and a two-time bronze medalist. The Daily Mail , Aug. 7, said that Katie Ledecky a five-time Olympic gold medalist swimmer is “the female Michael Phelps,” not the nine-time world champion. Lastly the most famous interview slam was when Serena Williams was asked why she wasn’t smiling, which received a lot of backlash. (Huffington Post, 2016). Have you ever seen an interviewer ask a male athlete why he wasn’t smiling?
These are just a few example’s of the ways that media disregards women’s accomplishments. Women deserve equal coverage as men do, female athletes are often treated as second class athletes. Interviews tend to compare and contrast women and male athletes, and that’s when labeling becomes the issue. Are we treating male athletes better than female athletes? Let’s start to look at each athlete male and female as an individual and start focusing on their goals and their accomplishments.