"The guy gets all the glory, the more he can score..." And you know the rest. The sexual double standard in the 21st Century is no different than it was in the 1950s, and who better to prove that than the perennially disgusting Justin Gimelstob? Gimelstob, in a Washington Post blog item that makes you want to take a post-read shower, says that he was sexually involved with Charlie Sheen's wife before her marriage and that "I don't think I was the only one."
So what? Kirsten Mueller has had sex with some men--what a complete slut that makes her, not only in the tiny mind of Gimelstob, but in the minds of most Americans (I cannot speak for other cultures). When does it end, this belief that men should have sex with as many women as possible, but women should not dare have more than one partner? I cannot tell you how many girls and women I meet who have bought totally into the belief that they are sluts and whores if they have sex with more than one man, but it is a credit to males to have multiple partners. Many of these same people--men and women--claim to support gender equality. How crazy is that?
In this same story, Gimelstob goes viciously after Anna Kournikova, calling her a bitch, a douche and a scumbag. With regard to playing against her in World Team tennis mixed doubles, he says "If she's not crying by the time she walks off that court," then I did not do my job." That is mild, however, compared to: "...she's gonna be serving 40 miles an hour and I'm gonna be just plugging it down her throat."
He denies he has any sexual interest in Kournikova, but goes on to say "I wouldn't mind having my younger brother, who's kind of a stud, nail her and then reap the benefits of that."
Of course, the defense of this type of blather is that is it "trash talk." I do not approve of trash talk because it gives the culture even more permission to be sexist, misogynistic, gay-hating, racist, etc. by normalizing hate. But even if one approves of sports trash talk, this goes over the line. And given Gimelstob's contempt for women, I'm not convinced that 100% of his diatribe is "only trash talk."
The time has come for Tennis Channel to get rid of the toxic and misogynistic Gimelstob. Don't expect Tennis Channel executives to do the right thing and fire him. Don't even expect them to perceive that anything he said (and constantly says) is inappropriate. We must be the ones to tell them. Pressure is the only thing that will make this happen (and it also needs to happen at ESPN, where Dick Enberg lives).
Tennis Channel emails: firstname.lastname@example.org