Thursday, June 24, 2010

On their knees, begging the question

For years, many of us have written about the sports media's refusal to promote women's sports, an act made worse by their then turning around and saying "But no one wants to watch women's sports." Obviously, if the sports media promoted women's sports the way they do men's sports, women's sports would be more popular. In some cases, people would learn for the first time that women even play certain sports.

The latest member of the media (albeit one who does promote women's tennis) to parrot this argument is Jon Wertheim, writing in the July/August issue of Tennis. Says Wertheim: "'s the reason women tennis players should be paid less than their male counterparts: simple economics. That is, the market has spoken and it says, unmistakably, that the product simply isn't worth as much."

I agree with that, on its face. But the market has been manipulated by a strong cultural bias toward males. Shouldn't we fix the market before declaring the sanctity of its results?

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