This story gets worse by the minute. One more word from Ines Sainz and I think my head might explode. Just last week, she was once again in the press and making no sense. Actually, she was defending her appearance and her right to dress like a bimbo by saying,
"I like to look good, but that in no way makes me any less dedicated to the sports journalism world ... I'm proud of being a woman and I'm not shy about hiding it. However, this in no way makes me any less of a professional."
Uh, yes, it does. That's the whole point.
The fact that she dresses like she works in a night club or is going on a date and thinks it's not only okay, but appropriate, is exactly what makes her "less of a professional." No one in the business world says we need to hide that we are women, at least not that I know of. But, let's face it. Boobs pouring out of a push-up bra and pants painted on in no way help the general public register the extent to which one belongs to the female gender, or not.
Professional would have been to merely say, "Please don't speak to me that way. It's inappropriate." Professional would have been to go back into the locker, dressed down a little, and continuing to conduct interviews.
The other thing that utterly escapes me is her proclamation that she will no longer enter the locker rooms due to this whole scandalous mess with the big bad Jets.
Isn't that her job? Isn't that the job of every sportscaster who interviews athletes? What makes her think that dressing so scantily excuses her from the basic core function of her role? Who decides for themselves, within an organization the size of the NFL, that they will be the exception to the rules by which everyone else plays? We call that a bona fide occupational qualification of the job (BFOQ) and if you can't qualify, then you're not sufficiently equipped to do the job. It's like your average, everyday person saying to his or her boss, "I'm not doing my weekly reports anymore. Tough nuggies," and getting away with it.
Granted, she is a smokin' hot sportscaster ... and by the looks of the way she walks around, she knows it and she needs the rest of the world to know it too. Still, it was the Jets who got dinged for making her feel uncomfortable? Gimme a break.
An article in The Daily News shortly after the "incident" quoted Sainz as saying that the reason she was no longer going to go into the locker rooms was because she didn't want to "be the focus." Bulls**t. Has anyone actually seen what this woman wears to work? It's all about the attention.
Then we had the Jets whose coach offered a personal and genuine apology and I'm left asking, "What is wrong with this picture?" It is not she who owes the Jets an apology for walking into their locker room in the wrong outfit? (Wrong meaning, wrong if she didn't if fact want anyone to notice her beauty, body, whatever.) Here we have everyone tiptoeing around poor Ms. Sainz's sensibilities and defending her right as a woman to sexualize herself and dress any way she pleases, in the name of what? Feminism? Please. That's the same argument they make in the sex and prostitution industries, which I suppose goes precisely to the heart of the matter. Dressing for sex in a sex club or store is totally appropriate. Not so in spectator sports, however. I'm sorry, in business life, being judged on what you wear and how you present yourself is a reality to which everyone is subjected, Ms. Sainz and her revealing, suggestive, look-at-me outfits not withstanding.
Presumably, we all go to work to get paid for the job we've been hired to do, women and men alike. Imagine if a man came to work in a Speedo all greased up and muscular. People would wonder. And not only that, he would be told to put some clothes on.
Come to find out, after all the drama is said and done, Sainz herself said that she, "'never heard something sexual'" from the players, but did say that one of them called her a bonita senorita, which means pretty lady. That's harassment? She also said that she never felt threatened, abused or mistreated. So all this was for that? It appears to be so.
A wise woman once told me that it was best to be attractive, but not attracting, when dressing professionally for work. What a simple and profound concept it was. Perhaps a tidbit Ms. Sainz might like to take to heart. There is a subtle, but significant difference. Sexing it up versus being pleasant to look at tell two very different stories about a woman. Women do, and will continue, to get a bad rap when they appear as though they are trying to attract, and therefore manipulate, men by exploiting their "assets." Whether they actually are or not is irrelevant. It's the impression they make and an inescapable one at that. Sorry girls, slutty just does not fly if you want to be taken seriously.
Follow Donna Flagg on Twitter: www.twitter.com/donnaflagg