NFL cheerleaders live miserable lives of silent degredation


#1

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#2

Can someone please explain to me what the point of cheerleaders is, because I really don't get it.


#3

in the modern age? mostly to keep you from being bored out of your mind when you watch football live, while the TV networks make their nut showing commercials to the people watching at home. the way football allowed itself to be shaped by TV is kind of a fascinating field of study in mass communications.


#4

Pardon my french, but what dafuq?

This is horribly disturbing. I sincerely hope that the lawsuit and the leaked manual leads to some form of meaningful change.


#5

I guess I just don't see the entertainment in watching dancers, although I'll give you the criticism of all the absurd breaks.

I watch sport for the sport. None of the stupid nonsense that goes around it. I don't need or want cheerleaders, stupid games on the big screen, walk on music, any of that crap.

IIRC, not every NFL team even has cheerleaders. If their contacts are this abusive, they should just not have any.


#6

I figured their working conditions would be bad, but holy shit the reality is far worse than I could have guessed.

A league pulling in 10 billion a year pays its staff less than $100 per game? How the hell do you make a living off that?


#7

And.... these girls subject themselves to this why???? If they are willing to do it, it certainly isn't for the money then.


#8

6 NFL teams without official cheerleaders.

Never seen the point of them myself, but it's not part of my underlying culture.
Several NRL and Super 14 teams have them, no idea why.


#9

The cheerleading part is weird in itself, but the whole experience seems really foreign to me. Of course not every game would be like this, but my word...


#10

The cheerleaders do it because it gives them exceptional future prospects, both for dating and marrying upwards, as well as in other careers. There are few better ways to become a professional sex object than being a cheerleader for a football team.

For those of us raised with college being the goal and abhorring reliance on our appearance to get by, this is a foreign concept. But it's very common in many places within this country (and the rest of the world.)

Think about it like internship and it starts to make a lot more sense.

The article strikes me as bad anthropology with pretty girls being the hook - e.g. using the cheerleaders to sell their story the same way everyone else uses them.

If we wanted to change something real, we'd be looking at why minimum wage is not applied to seasonal workers and ask ourselves why we are more concerned with the plight of pretty girls on a (career?) track instead of with people who will be stuck in crappy jobs with low pay for the rest of their lives.

[edited because I left extra words in a sentence rendering it unreadable]


#11

Culturally entrenched objectification of the female body for the purposes of marketing as far as I can tell. Football is a 60 minute game that takes over 3 hours to complete. Between the commercials and cheerleaders, it seems clear that one of the preferred time fillers is T&A. Why is that? "'Murica!" I think smiley


#12

Well there are millions of people out here living lives of silent degradation, but I guess we don't matter because we're unattractive.

I guess it's more tragic for them because they bear the additional burdens of being young, perky, and attractive.


#13

something something virility something patriarchy something something cult of violence etc.


#14

I was pretty prepared to give this a big 'meh'. I know people that have had model contracts, which are a pretty ugly thing, but when you have a superficial profession, you can't be shocked that the terms all revolve around superficial stuff. I was surprised to find it far more horrific than I expected. I find the whole thing pretty revolving and it says something about our society that such jobs even exist.

That said, as disgusted as I am by the culture that produces this, I struggle to muster up much in the way of sympathy for the actual cheerleaders. You don't become a professional NFL cheerleader by accident or because you can't get another job. If you meet the crazy qualifications to be an NFL cheerleader, you meet the qualification for a pile of other less horrific jobs. This is the kind of crazy you have to choose. These are not migrant crop pickers who have literally no choice and actually deserve sympathy for the shitty hand life has dealt them. These are people intentionally grasping at some sort of fame and eating shit to get there. It looks horrible, but the obvious solution is to just... you know... stop eating shit. If you can beat out the horrific competition to get on one of these squads, there are piles of other things you could choose to do instead.


#15

Many, many years ago when I was a ballet instructor in Dallas, Texas I had some Cowboy Cheerleader wanna-be's taking my advanced level ballet class. I was surprised that the girls thought being a cheerleader would propel them to stardom as a dancer. Many of these girls had be into the pageant circuit too. To qualify to audition for the squad, each girl had to take & pass an extensive written test on the game of football and rules.


#16

They may not be exactly analogous, but cheerleaders and players in a big team both train and sacrifice to be there. This isn't internship, for what they are doing this is as far as it it gets (obviously it can be seen as exposure to future employers, but that's no excuse for it not being better paid now). There's a lot of money going around in football, and they are clearly there because they bring viewers to the game and help to increase revenue. Why shouldn't they see some of the value they bring? $100 per game with no money towards the training, salon visits, uniform etc. that are required for your job doesn't go very far at all.

It is definitely a disgrace that seasonal workers in general get paid very little. Still, seeing this happening here when so much money is conspicuously going into the hands of other participants is worth mentioning.


#17

Some pretty ridiculous restrictions, except for: "If you are served pasta, never cut it to eat. Twirl a small portion on your fork with the assistance of a spoon."
That one should just be the law for everyone, or considered on a level with "don't drop your pants and take a dump on the sidewalk."


#18

Is manicotti or lasagna considered a pasta? This requirement seems to preclude their consumption if so.


#19

They're clearly referring only to "strand-based" pastas like spaghetti, linguini, fettuccine and the like.


#20

They should have specified! "If you are served pasta..." CLEARLY includes ALL pasta dishes! This may get even trickier when eating udon and ramen based dishes!