USWNT Kicks Darkness Of Sexist Legal Filing

USWNT fights for equal pay
United States forward Lynn Williams (13) and her teammates walks on to the field with their warmup shirts inside out before the game against Japan in the 2020 She Believes Cup soccer series at Toyota Stadium, at Frisco, Texas, on March 11, 2020. Photo: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

While the coronavirus is an unprecedented barrier to sports everywhere, sadly, sports sexism isn’t new. However, US soccer hit a low in new filings in the ongoing equal-pay lawsuit. Considering how the USWNT hasn’t lost a match in 14 months, won the last two World Cups, and just triumphed in the SheBelieves Cup, it’s only fair the women get paid a bit more. Wait, wait: the women receive less pay than the men? The latest blunder from the US governing body reinvigorated the push for equality but unfortunately proves there are still too many defenders in front of the goal.

Red Card Language

In court filings for summary judgment (a quick dismissal of a case), US soccer argued the USWNT has fewer responsibilities, and the men face more demanding working conditions. Of course, because carrying the banner for equality while winning World Cups requires so much less work. Also, the women have it so much more comfortable going up against less crowd noise. Not crowd noise! How ever will the men get by? The ladies disagreed with these curious arguments.

Open-Net Argument

The facts are straightforward. The Equal Pay Act requires that: “men and women be given equal pay for equal work in the same establishment. The jobs need not be identical, but they must be substantially equal.” A shot into a wide-open goal. Yes, there are some confusing legal difficulties with collective bargaining. However, that argument misses the point.

Instead of exploiting silly loopholes, why not attempt to fulfill the spirit of the law? The misstep was so embarrassing US Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro resigned. Also, the filing added pressure on the governing body to settle before a May 5th trial starts. The US Soccer flop aided, rather than hindered, the fight for equality. However, the women have another problem, along with their improving opponents. The rather odd paternalistic attitude towards women’s soccer refused to abate for decades and won’t anytime soon. The bad actors working against equal rights for some reason won’t give up. Especially critical, then, for the women and their fighting fans not to relent either.

Jeffrey Newholm
About Jeffrey Newholm 199 Articles
Hey there! I’m Jeff Newholm and depending on your point of view I’m blessed or cursed that my two favorite sports are outside the limelight. Being a UW-Whitewater grad (winter 2013) my first love was d3 college football, but over the last few years I have picked up a huge interest in woman’s basketball (Uconn being my favorite team as their 90 game winning streak helped show me how good a team can get in the woman’s game). I like all the sports everyone else likes (NFL, NBA, MLB, NCAA basketball and football) but those two sports are where I really have a passion.
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