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Inequality Prevails in Women’s Sports

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Women's USA hockey team

Women's USA hockey team

Peter Wayne

Peter Wayne

Women's USA hockey team

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     Women’s sports around the globe are being established officially and played by the best of the best from all different ethnicities, so why does Arvada West high school not have equality in their sports? At Arvada West, women’s sports are under supported, underfunded, and do not have equal rules. This a not only a problem for Arvada West, but for the nation. A change needs to be made in the support of our women’s teams because discrimination of gender is a serious problem; so much so that it is appearing in sports. Being active should not be different because of gender.

     Recently, there has been more national sports that women can play: The National Women’s Hockey League of 2015 (NWHL), The Women’s United Soccer Association of 2012 (WUSA), and the not so recently created, Women’s National Basketball Association of 1996. However, just because girls in college and highschool have a possible career to strive towards, that does not mean that they have all of the support men do. “[The attendance for boys games] is not as much is it used to, I mean the numbers are dwindling unfortunately” said Sports Advisor Bruna Lanaghan, “It’s even less for the girls.” This shows that boys generally get more support than girls do, which is probably a key factor that plays into women’s national leagues/associations. On television, the Superbowl is viewed by 114.4 million people according to the International Business Times. There was no comparable data for any games in the National Women’s Football Association (NWFA).

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     Women’s sports do not even have equal rules. “In volleyball, the net is lower for women (7 feet, 4 inches) than it is for men (8 feet). The same goes for basketball, with the basket being several inches lower. Women in professional golf play on shorter courses than the men do. That is because the average driving distance on the LPGA tour is just over 40 yards shorter than the PGA tour’s,” said Callum Fraser, a sports writer for The Hockey Writers. In the NWHL and in girls leagues, checking (separating the puck from the player by pushing your body into theirs and in the process knocking them over) is prohibited. 

     The reason that women’s sports have different rules set in place is because women are built differently than men. However, it is statistically proven that girls mature quicker, which can have an effect on the understanding of the rules. If girls mature faster than boys, then teaching the rules at an earlier age (properly taking and making a hit), could make girls sports even safer than boy sports because girls would understand the rules faster and take them more seriously. So the rules should not be any different in girl’s leagues than boys leagues because getting checked by another girl would mean that the check wouldn’t be as intense as a boy’s.

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Rules set in place for the safety of girls are offensive and irrelevant.

     Women’s sports are also underfunded. In professional women’s sports, the difference in pay to men’s professional sports are significantly different. At Arvada West, funding for girl sports are also different than boys sports. In women’s soccer, the top player gets paid 60,000 dollars a year, where in the top men’s soccer player gets paid 42 million dollars a year. In the NWHL the top player gets paid 10,000 dollars per player per season, where as the top player in the NHL makes 14 million dollars a year. Women that play the same sports as

men are paid significantly less, even though they could be matched in skill and the rules of the sports are pretty much the same.

     As seen, women’s sports are completely unrecognized at Arvada West and in professional leagues. We need equality! We have fought wars over equality for different races, now let us fight for the equality of genders!

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