Published By: 1World Online
Finally, America and the NFL may have found a woman that has more political clout than Hillary Clinton. If there is one occupation in this country that may be more controversial than a woman becoming president of the United States, it’s a woman officiating a National Football League game.
Forget about all that nonsense about women shattering the glass ceiling. Having a female referee is a lot bigger and has far greater social implications in the sports world than who is the first, gay NFL player. It’s also like finding the second God particle or reaching a Supreme Court decision on whether a woman can know more about football than a man.
Who would have thought the day would come that a female in black pinstripes would walk onto the football field at Metlife Stadium as a Line Judge and be tossing yellow penalty flags up into the air?
Maybe Roger Goodell did, or even his public relations department. Although Sarah Thomas was being primed for the NFL for a few years now, her advancement to the big leagues will say a lot for how the NFL views the role of women in a male-dominated sport.
It comes as no surprise that after last year’s catastrophic image thrashing (the NFL suffered) that it would suddenly appoint a woman as a referee. It’s like the female, coup d’etat of the entire sports world and a man opening the back door to the man cave.
Sarah Thomas, however, has the qualifications for that job – not only was she an outstanding athlete in high school and college sports (All-American) she also has lots of experience in officiating major college football games. She was also the first female to officiate a college bowl game (Little Caesars Pizza Bowl.)
The pharmaceutical sales representative from Brandon, Mississippi (and mother of three children) has been working her way up through the officiating ranks since 2007. So, who could think that she doesn’t deserve the job?
Inevitably, there will be those die-hard and traditional football fans that will say that a woman has no business on an NFL football field. But who is willing to argue that point when gender-equality issues are on the frontlines of social issues and next year’s presidential election?
It might be fun though, to watch and see how the meathead mentality of the NFL reacts when Sarah Thomas makes her first controversial call.
And it should arouse some interesting, gender-bender debating between husband and wives in front of the TV set on Sunday afternoons.
Joseph E. Rathjen is a freelance writer and an Opinion Writer at 1World Online – America’s Fastest Growing Social Research Engine