Ines Sainz, a sports reporter from Mexico, may be backpedaling on Twitter, but the NFL is still investigating the New York Jets coaches and players for harassment of the TV Azteca employee.
At last weekend's game, Sainz was the target of catcalls and juvenile behavior such as a quarterback coach throwing a ball near her (seriously? is he in fifth grade?) as she waited to interview quarterback Mark Sanchez. While Sainz said she tried to ignore the catcalls and never felt attacked or offended, apparently other reporters saw enough to make a complaint.
This Neanderthal behavior is not new.
Female sports reporters have been on the business end of sexual harassment since they first dared to step onto the playing field. And I don't think FHM's "Five Sexiest Sports Reporters in the World" is exactly helping to neutralize the hostile environment.
For example --
- Boston Herald reporter Lisa Olson was brutally harassed by members of the New England Patriots in the locker room in 1990. To add insult to injury, the owner of the team, Victor Kiam II, backed the players who stood nude in front of her making suggestive remarks and called her a "classic bitch."
- Would Tennessee head coach, Bruce Pearl, grab a male reporter like this during an interview? Erin Andrews was even attacked by football wife, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, after some creep videotaped her nude in her hotel room.
Countless sports writers have experienced non-public harassment, seeing it as "part of the job," even though the NFL passed a regulation granting equal access to reporters regardless of gender in 1985.
The fact that a woman can be treated with such a lack of respect while doing her job shows how far members of that fraternity have to go.
Should ladies steer clear of sports reporting? Or should athletes and coaches just grow the hell up?
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