Reporting Tony Paige
With certain athletes and teams performing badly when it comes to female journalists in the locker room, the question still remains: Do female journalists belong in the male dominating locker room?
They have paid their dues a long times ago and I have a simple plan to end the controversy of females journalists in the locker room.
I wholeheartedly support female journalists. As a former president of the New York Association of Black Journalists and the Boxing Writers Association of America, I have never had a problem with women covering sports.
Once as head of the BWAA, a new boxing promoter wanted to hold a press conference at a strip club in New York City.
I informed him that I couldn’t cover his event because of the location and the fact that I have female members of the organization.
I didn’t attend. It was the right thing to do.
Female journalists work just as hard and are just a dedicated to covering sports as their male counterpoints.
When I was editor of The City Sun newspaper in Brooklyn, I had a writer who covered women’s sports for the paper.
She always covered the PSAL girl’s basketball championship at Madison Square Garden.
One year she asked me for two credentials to cover the championship.
I was puzzled. She didn’t want a credential and a ticket, just two credentials.
When I informed her I had a full staff covering three championship games in total, she told me she need another credential for her nurse.
Patricia Lynch was on daily dialysis for kidney failure. She needed her nurse to be with her because the veins in her left arm had collapsed. She rested her notepad on her left arm and did her interviews in longhand. Her nurse was there in case any problem occurred.
I got her the extra credential.
Pat died a few years ago, but I’ll never forget her dedication to her craft.
Today, people are in a tizzy because a “good-looking” woman in a short skirt dared to wear her outfit to cover sports.
If New York Jets players had a problem with Mexican TV reporter Ines Sainz and her dress or lack there of, then they should’ve complained to their public relations staff with words and not with catcalls and rude remarks.
I understand the problem with females in a male locker room and as I do with men in a women’s locker room.
Once when I covered a WNBA game at the Garden, the journalists were waiting in the hallway to enter the locker room. Then it hit me. I turned to one of the PR reps and asked if the women are dressed when we enter.
I was told that the room doesn’t open until the last woman is dressed.
That’s how you solve this problem of women journalist coming into a male locker room when the men are in various stages of undress.
Just keep the room closed until the last player is dressed.
In this time of instinct access, keeping the locker room closed for another five minutes won’t cause the writers to miss their deadline.
Is that too much to ask so women can do their job?
Hell, I don’t feel like looking at naked male athletes so close the locker room for a few more minutes. It’ll make both genders happy.