Hi there, sports fans. My name is Jonanna Widner, and for the next couple months I'm going to be doing the guest-blogging about the nexus of sports and feminism. Said guest blog will fall under the name "Jock Bitch."
To start, I thought I'd just sort of spell out my relationship to/with sports, which hopefully will explain why I think sports are a feminist subject, and serve as an introduction to the philosophy behind this Jock Bitch.
First off, I am a huge sports fan. I do not qualify as a sports nut, mind you, as that would entail endless hours of trolling web sites for obscure statistics about how many strikes C.C. Sabathia throws per inning when pitching at dusk when the wind is coming from the south, but let's just say ESPN is often the first TV station I turn to when the TV comes on. Let's also say I've been known to Tivo basketball games to save for later, and that I cry regularly due to some sports-related catharsis or other. Last minute heroics are always good: Show me a walk-off home run and say good-bye to the Kleenex. And that's only during the regular season.....
I am not a biker by any stretch of the imagination, but I love biking anyway. You can find me and my family firmly in front of the television watching The Tour de France every July, and one of my big dreams to be able to someday follow the Tour in person.
But because biking is not a mainstream sport, whenever it is shown on television or broadcast anywhere, it's usually the men that are highlighted. Why further marginalize a sport by highlighting (gasp!) women?
Because it's Friday and I'm so sure none of us want to get all deep and "think-y" on a Friday--I'm gonna declare today "Support Movement Friday," which basically boils down to, I'm going to scour the internets for the coolest video/pics of women 'doing movement' and post it here. You are then going to ooh and ahh over the amazing fantastic beauty that is women moving--and then we will talk together to find ways to support ALL women in "movement."
One of the biggest issues for women athletes these days is the extreme hyper-sexualization many sports require women to participate in while competing at a highly advanced level. For example, car racer Danica Patrick has been very straightforward (and quite successful) about embracing her more 'feminine' side while letting her racing skills speak for themselves.
One of the big reasons so many women make the choice to not participate in sports is because "sports" is defined as a thing that very specifically and consciously denies women a place in. For example, I was discussing Sean Avery with my partner earlier in the week and he expressed the belief that on the whole, hockey is one of the least sexist sports out there.
NHL player Sean Avery was recently suspended for six games for making disrespectful comments about his former girlfriends while Jon Favreau, the chief speechwriter for the President-elect, goes unscathed after he gropes the breast of a cutout of Hillary Rodham Clinton. What's the best response to public figures making controversial comments and embarrassing poses?
Hello! My name is La Macha, and I'll be guest blogging at Bitch for the next bit! Usually I post at Vivir Latino with the unrivaled mami blogger; Maegan "la Mamita Mala" Ortiz. I thank the amazing Debbie for allowing me this opportunity to post here!
While I'm at Bitch, I'll be blogging about sports related 'stuff.' Now, before you roll your eyes and skip over my posts, let me just say--there's a reason that my 'column' will be posted under Team Queer: Movement and Sports Through A Bent Lens. I know that there's a reason so many women don't like sports because on many levels, I am those women myself. So I will be spending a lot of time uncovering (and encouraging YOU to uncover for yourself) reasons that 'sports' in general are a major turn off to women.