Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Double Standard Exposed

Tennis and tornadoes are not a good mix. On Saturday at the US Open Tennis Tournament, they made for bad tennis and questionable scheduling decisions. At issue was whether to play the two men's semifinals matches back to back or concurrently. They decided to play them back to back and sure enough, the second match had to be postponed because of the weather. Arguably this resulted in a significant advantage to the winner of the first match as he got an extra day of rest before the final.

The three commentators were agreed that the powers that be made the wrong call. One of them, I don't remember her name, said "I guarantee you that there were no women on that committee." This comment was pretty much ignored by the two male commentators and the comment never became an issue on the set or anywhere else so far as I know.

Now imagine if one of the male commentators had said "I guarantee you there were no men on that committee." Perhaps this becomes a story for the media.

Now suppose one of the three white commentators had said "I guarantee you there were no white people making that call." National story. Jesse Jackson to the rescue. Heads roll.

But there is no bias in the media.


Anonymous said...

Was it "niggerization" too?

I think sometimes people in positions where others have to listen deliberately say questionable things just to see how far they can go without being challenged. Obviously some groups know that they can say anything and not be challenged.

Denis Navratil said...

I don't understand your question anon.

Anonymous said...

Just wondering how many other layers of "you can't touch this comment" I could think of. What if it had been a Native American broadcaster who said "they need to hold down the fort if it rains"? The media wouldn't know what to do. What if a Polish broadcaster had said "whoever made this decision must be a Pollock"? What if it were Sean Cranley saying "what would Michael Gibson do"? Ok just having fun now. . .

Sean Cranley said...

I wasn't particularly intrigued by the issue in this post, but since I've been invoked I have to say, who the heck is Michael Gibson?

I have to say don't even understand the logic of the woman's comment. Why would a woman in this particular case be prone to make a decision different from a man? But then sports commentators say a LOT of really stupid things in their quest to talk incessantly for hours during sporting events.

Now suppose they decided to continue play even though it was officially the cocktail hour and someone said "I'll guarantee you there were no Irishmen on that committee." (Or Wisconsinites for that matter) Would I be offended? Nope.

These things really are case by case and depend on the relative power and history of the groups in question and whole host of other consideration that might be involved in a particular instance.

Denis Navratil said...

Sean, so far as I can surmise, the logic of the statement was as follows. The decision was dumb, therefore it was made by men because men are stupid. It was a blatantly sexist comment but was directed against men so it is OK. Denis.

Anonymous said...

No problem, the men were probably Republicans and climate change deniers too.