Global Sports Sexist Interview With Brittany Waters
By JChandler on July 15, 2011
Brittany Waters, one of Canada’s top rugby players, was profiled on Global BC TV’s News Hour Sports. The interview started out like most athlete features in which we heard some background information on how she got into the sport and some of her accomplishments. Eventually, it went off the rugby field and down sexism street.
The initial hook to the story appeared to be the “twist of fate” that got her into the sport of rugby and was followed by capturing the success of Brittany Waters. This could be an inspirational story as we learn there is no mandatory start or expiry date when it comes to unleashing your natural abilities. Pat Fleck, her coach, put all that into perspective in his statement regarding men and women capitalizing on their natural talents. Good interview so far…
Then the interviewer fell into statements and questioning that would be expected from a man generations ago. The kind of interview that mocked women athletes, the statements that were designed to highlight the differences in gender, the questions that were concerned about what a woman’s husband would think; that type of backwards thinking.
He goes on to reflect about the “irony” that Brittany got into the sport so late; given that her father, brother and husband played rugby. That’s not irony. He then puts his foot further in his mouth by letting viewers know that “her husband doesn’t mind her coming home with cauliflower ears.” WHAT? Just when you thought he couldn’t possible fit more of that foot in without choking he asks, “What does your husband think about this?” followed up by an old but very sexist piece of verbal diarrhea “He’s not worried about you breaking a nail or anything.”
WHAT THE HECK KINDA QUESTIONING IS THAT?!!
For all of you people out there that think this is a ‘one off’, you are wrong. Sexism in the media (and sports) is alive and well. Yes, there has been some advances but still to this day women can hear these types of statements or questioning. I defy you to find any of the above being broached to a ‘male’ athlete; what any woman would think whether mother, sister or wife, would be for the most part inconsequential. I have provided a link below, just so that you know I didn’t make this up. See for yourself and see what you think. Sexist or what?
As for Brittany Waters, she handled the interview well. Very good to see Brittany’s success; wishing her and her team all the best in the future.