There’s a part of me that wants to go all-out feminist rant between some of the coverage of the swimmers this year.
Along the lines of what I would pay to see the media say:
“And think of all the credit that should go to Michael Phelp’s Fiancee – giving birth and supporting him through his Olympic training! She has totally made his medal count increase possible! With a 3-month-old!”
Coverage of Hosszou’s husband from Hungary getting almost complete credit for his wife’s individual achievements in the pool. They show video of him during each of her achievements.
All Phelp’s fiancee gets are…actually – she gets nothing. It’s all about how adorable his son is or whatever his son’s facial expressions or reactions are. That’s complete BULLSHIT. Not to poo on Michael Phelps – an amazing swimmer, but it fucking takes a village to make an Olympian. And the fact that he has a three-month-old son is not nearly so prescient of an issue as fellow Olympian Dana Volmer gets an entire 10-minute media piece on how far she’s come 15 months after giving birth. WTH! Yes. Being an Olympian 15 months after birth is a hell of an accomplishment. But there are no jokes or asides about how tired Michael Phelps must be or how much more of an accomplishment it is for him to earn medals three months after his partner gave birth.
The village gets credit for the female athletes (so long as they’re generally male or there’s some major life obstacle they’ve overcome), while the male gets the “more honorable” individual achievement credit and the village gets thrown aside completely, or demeaned for the male athletes.
That, along with the wide, sexist media coverage of the Tongan flag-bearer during the Olympic opening ceremonies, and I’m just completely disillusioned about this entire series of events.
I know the media spins these things, and the way they’re doing it (I guess, just NBC – with hideous rights agreements), so clearly demonstrating their obnoxiously obvious, sexist bias (at least in America) is really pissing me off this year. And making sexist objects out of men (the Tongan athlete) is just as demeaning as the uneven coverage of the female athletes. There has to be a balance somewhere.
As it stands, though, the American coverage of these Olympic games is pissing me off.