Baseball in the UK faces problems of sexism – international

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It’s no exaggeration to say that Amanda Hawking devoted his life to baseball – Especially female baseball – No United kingdom. Playing sports has been his dream since he was a kid. This made recent events doubly painful for Hawking and led to her resignation as general manager of the UK women’s baseball team.

On April 25, Hawking, better known as Doris, was shocked and disgusted to see a post on her account. British Baseball League on Twitter. It looked like a crude attempt by the league to use a sexual image of the topless player to promote the new UK Women’s Baseball League that Hawking had founded.

The photo showed a player seen from behind wearing a helmet and gloves. The player appeared to have lost a uniform or was wearing a suspender shirt. To the left of the photo was the women’s league logo giving the appearance of approval. Despite requests to withdraw the tweet, it remained on the air for hours and was initially defended by the union president.

Within a week, the position led to the resignation of Jerry Perez, former president of the British Baseball League, and Hawking, causing outrage in the small but passionate British baseball community over an issue that reflects a problem. United State.

Verses sexual harassment And misconduct after reports that executives and coaches from various teams have behaved inappropriately toward women has alarmed Major League Baseball in recent months. The incident in England demonstrated that this problem is not limited to American baseball.

Hawking said of his resignation on May 4 in a live interview from his home in Camelford, Cornwall, southwest England.

As in the United States, the episode was a catalyst for many people to take a closer look at British baseball’s attitudes toward women. But unlike the United States, much in the British baseball community soon rallied around Hawking and condemned the British League.

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In the UK, players don’t make a living playing baseball, so there is a lot at stake. But several teams issued statements denouncing the tweet and the union’s lack of response quickly. Players threatened to boycott the games unless action was taken.

“It was such a pleasure to see,” said Tracy Wilkes, New York Mets cheerleader in Sheffield, England. “The men’s support for Doris and the women’s game has been incredible and I think this unfortunate incident gave us the opportunity to learn.” He is one of my hosts birds with ballsBritish Baseball Podcast.

For many, the tweet itself was only the source of the problem. The lack of remorse from the union and its initial decision to defend the image instead of erasing it added fuel to the fire of conflict.

Drew Spencer, the coach for the British men’s team, also oversees the men’s and women’s regional teams. He said he was shocked and disappointed by the tweet, and immediately reached out to Hocking for support. “As soon as I saw that, I knew it was going to be a huge problem,” said Spencer, who is from California and played a centerback for Dartmouth College in the 1990s. “It was devastating for Doris. She really devoted her life to British baseball.” before moving to England.

Hawking, 34, was seven when his mother gave him a baseball glove, and he played with his brother and some friends on the neighborhood soccer field, but they didn’t even know the rules. When I was a teenager, I always watched ebay In search of a throwing machine, and at age 19, I went to the British Baseball League to see if there were any women’s teams or leagues. Softball was shown who was not interested in him. She had just started thinking about putting together a women’s team when she passed out due to a severe case of cholesteatoma, a middle ear skin tumor that had reached her brain. Doctors announced that she would not live past the age of 27. “I accepted that I was going to die and planned my funeral,” he said.

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The new laser technology eliminated the tumor and Hawking recovered, albeit with some balance problems related to inner ear damage. Although she regained her health, she struggled to adjust to the changes in her life, until one day she saw an advertisement on the social network for a mixed baseball league in Cornwall. She entered, and renewed her passion for baseball and her spirit. “This ad saved my life. There was nothing to get me out of bed. Since then, everything has changed.”

But looking at that tweet, it looks like the beloved game has turned against it. When Hocking first saw the shirtless woman’s job, he found it to be in bad taste, but felt the problem could be easily remedied if it was ruled out. He noted, “Everyone makes mistakes. You solve them and you keep doing it.” So she texted Perez and asked him to remove the post. “The player in the photo is clearly naked and that’s not appropriate. Can you change or remove the photo, please? Thank you,” Hawking wrote in a text she showed. New York times.

Perez refused at first, claiming that the woman in the photo was not topless. Instead, he responded to Hocking, claiming that the photo was originally wearing a uniform, but that an editor had altered the photo “so you can’t see her name.”

a British Baseball League The post was left open for about 12 hours before being deleted, despite increasingly assertive requests from Hocking and others. Hawking said he found Peres’ responses offensive.

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Despite numerous attempts to contact Perez via email and voicemail, he did not respond to requests for comment.

On May 7, as pressure mounted, Peres resigned. A few days later, the British League apologized to Hawking and the entire Women’s League, adding that it plans to work with Hawking and the women’s team to analyze “the structural flaws within the league that led to the unfortunate incident”.

Once the situation calmed, Hawking said, she was encouraged by the show of support she received. She is still focused on the new National League, but is not yet ready to resume her position as the women’s national team manager. Spencer said he hoped Hawking would reconsider. After all, modern women’s baseball in the UK is primarily the result of Hawking’s vision and work. “Nobody does anything alone, but if Doris had not created the Women’s Baseball League in the UK and become a beacon of hope for women across the country, teams probably wouldn’t exist today,” Spencer concluded.

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About the Author: Lizzie Gray

"Lifelong web fan. Incurable internet junkie. Avid bacon guru. Social media geek. Reader. Freelance food scholar."

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