April 19, 2024

The Idiotic Controversy Over the WNBA ‘Pay Gap’

Leftists are once again in a lather, this time about the outrageous difference in salaries of men and women basketball players.

Millions of Americans learned something new this week: There’s a professional women’s basketball league called the WNBA. And we’re all supposed to be upset that women who play in this heretofore unknown league aren’t paid very well compared to the men of the hugely popular NBA.

Iowa Hawkeyes star Caitlin Clark may have just lost the college national championship game, but she was picked first by the Indiana Fever in the WNBA Draft. She’s guaranteed a starting base salary of $76,535, which most college graduates would probably celebrate for their first job right out of school. The average salary for any American is just under $60,000 a year.

Clark does seem to be pretty happy, though probably more so because of the endorsement deal she’s reportedly signing with Nike for north of $20 million.

Similar to the kerfuffle over “equal pay” in women’s soccer, the social justice warriors took to the court to cry about the unfairness of it all.

“One NBA benchwarmer will earn more than Caitlin Clark’s entire team,” headlined Axios. Vox lamented, “The WNBA draft puts pro basketball’s longstanding pay gap on stark display.” A Forbes contributor wondered, “Can Caitlin Clark Fix The WNBA And NBA Pay Gap?”

The details are eye-popping. According to Axios, “The highest-paid WNBA player makes a little less than $250,000. The highest-paid NBA player makes a little more more than $50 million.” Gee.

Even Joe Biden weighed in:

Women in sports continue to push new boundaries and inspire us all.

But right now we’re seeing that even if you’re the best, women are not paid their fair share.

It’s time that we give our daughters the same opportunities as our sons and ensure women are paid what they deserve.

Clearly, the solution is to turn our sons into daughters.

After all, Biden is the same guy currently rewriting Title IX, which governs women’s sports, to allow men to play those sports so long as they pretend to be women. Just last week, Dawn Staley, head coach of the national champion South Carolina Gamecocks, made clear that she thinks men ought to be allowed to play women’s sports. “Lady Ballers” in real life.

Leftist radicals demand that men pretending to be women be allowed in women’s locker rooms and dominate female sports with their biologically superior strength and speed. But by golly, don’t pay women less than men.

Clark certainly did increase interest in women’s basketball. In fact, more people watched this year’s college women’s final than the men’s final. There’s reason to think the WNBA will get a lot more attention because of her.

Still, this all got me thinking: Is there something other than gender that might dictate the pay of female basketball players compared to their male counterparts?

Lo and behold, as I read down into the Vox story, I ran across this clue about the NBA vs. the WNBA: The pay gap is “due in part to the leagues’ differences in revenue and season lengths.”

Huh. So, revenue and profit play a role in employee salaries? Weird.

As it turns out, those things play a huge role. The WNBA is projected to bring in revenue of roughly $200 million this year. The NBA takes in roughly $10 billion every year. I’m not a math guy, but it seems like the NBA makes a lot more money, which means players can be paid a lot more.

The Washington Free Beacon’s Andrew Stiles does some math to answer Biden’s “fair share” statement. “NBA first overall pick Victor Wembanyama earned a salary of $12 million this year, which is X percent of the league’s annual profit of $3 billion,” he noted. “Once we solve for X and adjust for the runaway inflation on Biden’s watch, we can determine what Caitlin Clark’s ‘fair share’ would be based on the WNBA’s annual profit of… zero dollars.”

He’s not making up the last part. Google “Has the WNBA ever made a profit?” All the results talk about revenue, not profit. But the answer is, in fact, no. The WBNA has not made a profit in any of its 28 years. It exists only because of subsidy money from the NBA.

In this economic system called capitalism, revenue and profit are directly tied to earnings. The system that critics of the pay gap seem to want is called communism.

I’ve never watched a women’s basketball game and don’t plan to start now. Nothing against women — I just don’t like basketball. But how many of the sanctimonious critics of this supposedly outrageous pay gap have ever watched a single minute of the WNBA themselves?

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