If you tell me that you’ve never taken a selfie, you’re lying. Selfies allow us to capture moments that we want to remember, wherever we are, with the people we care about. So why, when selfies are so common across all genders, ages and races, is it considered a “bad” thing when it’s a young woman who’s taking one? People from older generations especially look down upon young women for taking “excessive” numbers of pictures of themselves. There should be no negative judgement over taking a picture of yourself just because the subject is a woman.

A few weeks ago, a two-minute video clip of a stadium section filled with members of a chapter of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority taking selfies at an Arizona Diamondbacks game went viral. Television announcers Steve Berthiaume and Bob Brenly could be heard making fun of the women, pleading to society for an intervention as the girls snapped picture after picture. These two older men proceeded to laugh and joke about how the girls didn’t seem to even realize that there was a ballgame going on.

This unprofessional commentary went on for longer than necessary. It shouldn’t have even been made into an issue because the viral clip was missing a vital part of the story — right before the clip began, stadium announcers asked the fans at the baseball game to tweet their best selfie for the Fan Photo promotion.

Let me repeat that: The stadium announcers requested fans to tweet their best selfie, prompting the majority of that stadium’s smartphone owners, both men and women, to take selfies. But in making fun of the group of blonde girls, the announcers in turn made fun of women as a whole.

This is simply outrageous. Was making fun of these women for two minutes more entertaining to these two men than doing actual sports commentary on the game because they thought the only reason that the girls were there was to take pictures and pose with hot dogs? That would be a pretty sexist thing to assume, considering that over 47 percent of the fanbase of MLB is female, according to SB Nation. That’s a large group to alienate.

The Diamondbacks’ organization offered the women free tickets to another game as an apology, not only at the hands of the television announcers, but what these women were subjected to over the Internet. The comments online called the women “stupid” and “air-heads” because of their hair color, while others lamented the disease of the selfie-epidemic they had and how the spread of duck-faces couldn’t be stopped. The majority of commenters online mentioned it was “typical” of a girl to do something like that at a sporting event.

I have to hand it to the women of Alpha Chi Omega; they handled their newfound “fame” with more grace than I would have displayed. The sorority requested that the tickets be given to a local women’s shelter instead. While the Arizona Diamondbacks can apologize all they want, their words do nothing when it comes to solving the problem of men making fun of women for doing something considered typically female at an event they consider masculine.

Is this to say that a young man has never, ever, taken a picture of himself at a sporting event, either doing something mundane or stupid? I can tell you that I have witnessed men at baseball games taking selfies with a beer or a gigantic sandwich. But no, the “selfie epidemic” only affects women. It’s still considered a “man’s sport,” so it’s appropriate that men take pictures, but if a woman shows interest in something that men consider theirs, she’s considered a “poser.”

Society is saying that these women can’t have as strong a love for the game as their male counterparts because it goes against the stereotype, which is played out in Berthiaume and Brenly’s comments. This way of thinking will end up destroying not just the MLB, but other organizations, such as the NFL and NHL. In this era, people will pursue the things that they enjoy because they want to — not because someone of the opposite gender tells them to.

For these comments to stop, society needs to accept that women have just as much of an interest in things that are considered “male” as men do.  People also need to rethink how they perceive girls taking selfies; it’s not narcissistic, nor do the poses and faces make these women “air-heads.” Instead, it makes them human for wanting to commemorate their experiences. I hate to say it, but I doubt there would be so much of a fuss or a production if it was a bunch of frat boys taking pictures at the game.

People, no matter what gender, should be allowed to enjoy themselves and take however many pictures that they want, wherever they please. It’s high time that older people, both men and women, stop looking down at young people, especially girls, for wanting to have reminders of the fun times that they are having. Don’t let some older man sitting in a booth, not commenting on the game he’s paid to do, dictate how you enjoy baseball or any other sporting event.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.