The Time I Cared About Sports

I mostly watch sports when social norms dictate that I do so. That's not even true: I exist in the same room as the television that plays the sports, but I rarely watch the actual sporting events. Most sports are difficult for me to follow, so it takes something big for me to take any interest—something like Olympic figure skating or, I don't know, pay inequality.

As my closest companions know, I listen to NPR all of every workday (excluding the holiday season when I exclusively listen to Christmas music). Today was no exception. The one story that caught my attention was about the U.S. women's national soccer team filing a federal complaint accusing U.S. Soccer of wage discrimination. The five players who filed the complaint allege—as I understand—that their team is cooler than the men's team and actually wins games, so they should at least get paid as much as the men do (right now the women say they get paid as little as 40% of what the men earn). In my opinion, the women are probably right because I have actually heard of Hope Solo, but I cannot name one guy on the men's team.

Of course, as I said, I know very little about sports. I am not qualified to decide how much these women should get paid. But what really burned my popcorn while I listened to this story was hearing that U.S. Soccer is "disappointed" with the complaint. Yes, how disappointing that women should ask for equal pay for basically dominating their sport! If you're looking for a disappointment in U.S. Soccer, it's not with these players.

Regardless of the outcome of this complaint, I commend these women for standing up for equal pay. I might even watch them play soccer now, as long as my mother isn't in the room: she cheers for soccer louder than most women scream during childbirth.