Russ White MUG

Last week, I wrote about a Gallup Poll showing how Americans’ pride in our country has been diminishing in the Drumpf era. Sunday, we were provided with the first event since the 2016 election worthy of pride in what our country has produced on the international stage.

The U.S. Women’s National Team won the 2019 Women’s World Cup Soccer/Football Tournament in Lyon, France. It was their second-consecutive victory, and their fourth of the eight women’s tournaments played. They have also won the Gold Medal in four of the six Olympics held since the game was included in 1996.

This team showed the world a persona radiating focus, commitment, competence, professionalism and inclusion. They are everything this country has ever purported to represent and stand for. We should all be enormously proud having them represent us on the world stage.

Their program dwarfs that of our men in virtually every category, with one glaring exception. Within moments of Megan Rapinoe, a true American hero and role model, lifting the trophy in triumph, the crowd in Lyon stood and began chanting, “Equal Pay, Equal Pay”!

In March of this year, these women sued the U.S. Soccer Federation for “purposeful gender discrimination.”

With the women submitting data that showed that members of the men’s team earned, on average, more than 2.5 times what the women did from 2013 to 2016, it is hard to argue their point.

Because they are winning so much more than the men, they are actually playing more games than the men, making the disparity even more lopsided. The women, unlike their counterparts, play to sold-out stadiums and generate massively more TV revenue.

As proud as we should be of them and their victory, this pay disparity is a national embarrassment.

* * *

Speaking of national embarrassments, live streaming from a bar in Lyon after the championship game was interrupted as the crowd began chanting “F*** Trump.” To see this on live TV, on Fox no less, shows America what the world thinks of our leader.

It is no different in officialdom. The British ambassador to the U.S. wrote this about the administration he is tasked to coordinate with: “We don’t really believe this Administration is going to become substantially more normal; less dysfunctional; less unpredictable; less faction riven; less diplomatically clumsy and inept.”

We’re great at sports, but our current government is a laughingstock on the world stage.

— White, a retired fire services chief in South Florida, lives in Orange City. Send email to info@beacononlinenews.com.