Sunday, August 21, 2005

PS to Talking about Female Bodies

As a brief addendum to my observations about the lack of discussion about larger softball players I add this tidbit:
While glancing up briefly to the Little League World Series (baseball, not softball) as it was playing in the background, I noticed an interesting discrepancy in the personal "stats" displayed on the screen. When a player is up at bat, on the screen appears the player's name, age, height, some personal fact or interest (favorite team, actor, movie, etc.) and weight. Weight was missing from the stats shown during the L.L. Softball World Series. Why is this? Are we worried about scarring girls by displaying their weight on national television? If so, why doesn't that same concern apply to boys? In a warped form of "equality," we see incidences of eating disorders rising among boys and men. Of course the issues can differ. Though larger boys might feel embarassed by possible excess weight (or the percpetion of excess), it seems more likely that smaller boys, not wanting to be seen as the "weakling," would want to add weight. And at this age (middle school) most boys are just hitting puberty and growth spurts so it's likely that many are smaller, relatively speaking. And adding weight might entail not just eating more, but supplementing with questionable products or even steroids. In the end, I think that America just does not really need to know what 12-year olds of any gender weigh.

No comments: