SPICY FOOTBALL AND FEMINISM

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Submitted Date 02/07/2020
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I'm drinking Aztec hot cocoa so this might get a bit spicy.

I don't watch football. To be fair, I don't watch any sport. While I realize my view is clouded by my ideological background and experiences, I find no real productive use for society's worship of sports. Call me a snob, or whatever, let's get it out of your system now before we begin.

Am I here to demonize watching sports? No, but I'd like to present a different perspective.

My aversion to watching team sports runs deeper than my distaste for the patriarchal structures that elevated them in the first place. Let's review a few.

Hello Testosterone
Yup, I said it. All humans, regardless of gender, have this hormone coursing through their bodies. Aggression, competition, raging libido. There you have it—testosterone. Add cheerleading into the mix and you have a perfect combination to satisfy any testosterone-drunk brain. I get that there are some sports that are less competitive, but people will get belligerent at a chess match. Moving on.

Where's All the Money?

I'm not the first one to bring this up. Money follows what we value as a society—why doesn't anyone seem to have a problem with the fact that public school teachers don't often get paid a living wage? We need to reflect on what we value and throw money at if we want to make meaningful progress.

Consumerism

Super Bowl commercials can be pretty thought-provoking and funny—that's the exception I want to address before diving into this one. At its heart, football (or any other sport) isn't about consumerism, but we've made it into the monster it is today. Well, we've managed to make any holiday or large event about consuming, didn't we?

Woa, Halftime?
If you couldn't already tell, I didn't watch the game. I logged on to Facebook to see a family member responding to the halftime show. She used the words "HUMAN TRAFFICKING" and later "bondage" so it caught my attention and I investigated. While I think this interpretation is extreme and doesn't grasp the political statements behind the show, it brings up an interesting topic: misogyny. Let's dive down that rabbit hole for a moment.

Misogyny

That slippery, shape-shifting creature. It might be living in many of us—hiding in the secret caverns of our subconscious. The irony of the statements made in the post and thread about fighting human trafficking and rape by not allowing women to express themselves sexually escaped most in the echo chamber. The problem is, if we continue to blame women, we repeat the cycle of misogyny. Moving past the fact that her statements were made out of fear that the men in her life would be tempted by succubae, and not by altruistic motives—we need to address the root cause of the disease if we want to cure it. Demonizing performers isn't the answer—that's just fuel to the fire of the issue at hand. Ultimately, (I can't believe I have to say this in the 21st century) women shouldn't have to worry that what they wear or how they dance might put them in danger. Objectification happens within the objectifier and is not the fault of the objectified person. I find it interesting that the word I just used, objectifier, isn't a recognized word. Isn't that a bit telling of our ideology behind objectification? Victim blame worked into our vocabulary.

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