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We like sports and we care who knows

sports and womenA woman walks into a bar; her friends are not there, and she is not meeting a date. Her jersey is not pink or fitted, and there is no punch line to this anecdote. A woman walks into a bar because it’s basketball season, and she is going to watch her team play.

Female sports fans are not rare. In fact, they’re p common. Nielsen.com says about 35 percent of  fan bases in each league are female.  Only about one, maybe two percent of the human population has red hair. Think about how many gingers you know, now think about how many sports fans you know.

It’s 2015; girls can marry girls and guys can marry guys. Pets have wheelchairs and phones have this thing called “3D touch.” Sexism is outdated.

I’m the sports editor of Eagle News. I like sports. I cover every sports team and sports-related matter at the university. The student population has entrusted me to do that, which is a huge deal when you attend a school sometimes only identifiable as “Dunk City.” I watch football on Sundays, and I always have. I played multiple sports all through high school, including basketball, softball, track and lacrosse.

I remember a few years ago sitting at a bar  cheering on my football team — a team to remain unnamed due to recent performance. I remember a male telling me it was cute that I was trying to keep up with the boys and watch sports.

Miranda Fricker is a philosopher of the modern world. She has a concept she refers to as “epistemic injustice.”

“Epistemic injustice is the injustice that occurs when someone is not treated seriously as a possible source of knowledge,” Fricker said in her book, “Epistemic Injustice.”

News flash — it’s belittling and ignorant to assume my gender has anything to do with my knowledge or what I enjoy. The sexism is getting old, and 2015 doesn’t have room for it.

Angie Ritt, a sophomore studying social work,  thinks guys know more about sports.

“[Guys] are more apt to play them in high school and sports are more geared toward guys’ interests,” Ritt said. “I don’t think sexism plays a role in it, because it’s generally true in most cases.”

I understand girls will never be defensive linemen in the NFL, but think twice about our loyalty to a sport or team. Most of us girls aren’t in the stands of a basketball game because we want you to think we are cute. We grew up with sports and teams too, just as our brothers, cousins, dads and uncles did.

We are tired of having our opinions dismissed because you think it’s cute of us to like sports.

I’m sorry we don’t fist fight in the stands, most of the time. We do have strong reactions, and that is because we are passionate, not hormonal females. We are capable of watching sports while maintaining a classy feminine demeanor.

I recognize that “not all men”— especially the ones reading this — speak to female sports fans condescendingly. However, just because you haven’t personally witnessed it or been a part of it, does not mean it’s not something we experience on a regular basis.

Guys think it’s safe to assume women’s opinions about sports are arbitrary. Be careful, because our fantasy teams and March Madness brackets might kick yours in the ass.

About The Author

Madison Hampton

Madison Hampton is a sophomore who has a different major every week. She is the sports and media editor. She was born at a young age in Naples, Florida and has since become a caffeine dependent life-form. When she isn't in the newsroom, she's probably taking a nap. Madison is a paper-cut survivor and an advocate of sweatpants in the work place. #GodBlessThisHotMess

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