Battle of the Sexes: Footballers v. Beauty Queen

by Emilie Branch

Reporter Ines Sainz was scheduled to interview Mark Sanchez of the NY Jets, when she got a little more attention than she bargained for. Ines, a reporter for Azteca TV (a Mexican station) and a former Miss Spain pageant queen, was the alleged victim of sexual harassment. She was “cat-called” as well as whistled and stared out while at Jets Florham Park. Ines has been criticized for being dressed inappropriately, although she was wearing jeans and a tee shirt. I don’t think Mrs. Sainz style of dress had much to do with the real issue–her body. Though she is a reporter, she is still a woman who has been deemed universally attractive. She is someone who has managed to profit off her sex appeal. 

The Jets acted more like prisoners or teen boys than professional athletes, or more importantly gentleman. Ines Sainz is a beautiful woman, but instead of treating her like a lady, the team reacted to her like a pack of wolves. Or honestly, like footballers. I’m a little torn here. Obviously, I’m against the fact that Ines Sainz felt uncomfortable, or intimidated. I think it is absolutely wrong when women feel singled out or like they are less than men, especially when working. However, maybe people are over-reacting to this just a little bit. A woman like Ines is (take this with a grain of salt) probably used to being catcalled. She’s sexy, and very feminine. Men who play football are super masculine. Men are going to chase her like wolves, not because they mean to harass her, but because it’s primal. The Jets should be disciplined, but I don’t think they’re going to be given more than a slap on the wrist. This is where the issue arises–these sorts of things happen periodically to remind us (in general) men are men and women are women. The problem doesn’t go away because it’s not really a problem, it’s a gender divide. Regardless of how modern or PC we get, we’re still controlled by our sex.  

Ines is now saying that the press ran wild with the events of Sept 12th: “It was simply a situation that got out of hand. I waited for the interview with Mark Sanchez, we did it and it turned out great…the next day the press is reporting that I was a victim of harassment and inappropriate behavior by the Jets…The owner, Mr. Johnson called me to apologize for his team’s behavior.”  The battle of the sexes is good for the media business. Sexual harassment gets people feeling passionate, and even innocuous situations can be blown out of proportion. Maybe Ines is just accepting that she felt uncomfortable because she’s been told what happened to her wasn’t a big deal, maybe this should be taken even more seriously instead of blown over. I think this is a circumstance where the individual would have to decide for themselves if they could handle the environment. Either way, the work environment (even if it is in sports) shouldn’t be an opportunity for a woman to be treated like a sex object or a victim. At the end of the day, what happened to Ines is indicative of how men are respecting women. Since for little boy’s footballers are heroes, they should be learn to be more careful next time. Though, is it possible that catcalling is a weird way of showing respect? It is like a collective compliment…It’s almost like saying we can’t control ourselves-you’re a beautiful distraction. I don’t know. Thoughts?

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