I went to the Missouri Valley Convention (MVC) males’s basketball media day Oct. 16. There have been 30-plus attendees, composed of beat writers, pupil journalists, sports activities data administrators and coaches. I used to be the one girl in attendance. 

There are 10 groups within the MVC males’s basketball convention. 10 groups and never a single girl journalist in attendance aside from myself. So far as I do know I’m additionally the one girl beat author within the MVC. Final yr, I had Missouri State College’s Amanda Sullivan be a part of me. This yr, I’m alone. 

I’m not right here to beat a useless horse. Being a lady in sports activities is likely one of the most isolating, but in addition some of the supportive issues I’ve been part of. There are occasions the place I really feel so oppressed as a result of I’m a lady, however I additionally know I’m not alone. Being a lady in sports activities has given me a group of ladies that I do know has my again. 

Journalism is likely one of the best markets on the market. Now think about sports activities journalism, arguably extra aggressive, after which being a lady in sports activities. It’s poisonous. 

I discover myself evaluating myself to all my counterparts — girls, males, information writers, sports activities writers. How do I examine to these individuals?

Right here’s the factor, I’m a great journalist. I’m a profitable journalist. So, why do I get so upset after I don’t get known as for a supposed MVC beat author podcast? I don’t know if it’s as a result of I’m a lady or as a result of I’m a pupil journalist, however I get ignored of consideration typically and I often affiliate it with the truth that I’m a lady. 

It’s not unknown that ladies are taken much less critically than males in sports activities. In sports activities media, sports activities advertising and marketing and even on the precise sports activities groups, girls are typically seen as lower than their male counterparts. 

After I took sports activities regulation my junior yr, I took on the subject of ladies’s pay inequality inside sports activities for my analysis paper. My principal focus was on the USA Girls’s Nationwide Soccer Crew and their lawsuit in opposition to the USA Soccer Federation. 

However let me give you a more moderen instance. 

Lebron James simply gained his fourth NBA championship with the Los Angeles Lakers. He’s been within the NBA for 17 seasons and in 2020 was paid $37.44 million. His bonus for profitable the 2020 Finals was $370,000.

Sue Chook gained her fourth WNBA Championship with the Seattle Storm within the WNBA this yr. She’s been within the WNBA for 17 seasons and in 2020 was paid $215,000. Her bonus for profitable the 2020 Finals was $11,356. 

See the difficulty?

I’ve been watching sports activities since I used to be a toddler. I’ve been overlaying sports activities since highschool. I really like sports activities. I really like writing about sports activities, however I’ve grown to hate being a sports activities journalist.

Not solely do I’ve the standard struggles of being a journalist — low pay, lengthy hours, nearly no breaks — however I additionally need to take care of sexist feedback, worrying if my outfit is just too revealing or if I’m speaking an excessive amount of. 

I’ve determined to enter sports activities regulation after I graduate. I’m going to proceed to jot down as a result of I adore it, however I gained’t be a sports activities journalist for lengthy. 

I’m sick of writing about girls’s inequality in sports activities, so I’m going to regulation faculty so I can battle to alter the gender inequality in sports activities. 

I’m only one individual although, it takes much more than that to make a change. That is my name to motion for you all. Step up. Be higher. Help girls in sports activities.

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