Women matter. Women’s sports matter. Now put on the game

It seemed that the success of the Chicago Sky — and the WNBA at large — had generated at least some interest among the public. So why was it so hard to find a sports bar that would air any of the playoff games?

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Chicago Sky celebrating WNBA championship

(From left) Azurá Stevens, Stefanie Dolson, Courtney Vandersloot, Candace Parker, Lexie Brown and Allie Quigley dance as the Chicago Sky celebrates its WNBA Championship title during a rally at Pritzker Pavilion on Oct. 19.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

The Chicago Sky has given our city its first WNBA title. The Willis Tower split the night with its blue-and-yellow antennae, and all week, the lions of Michigan Avenue donned Sky jerseys.

Games 3 and 4 were sold out at the Wintrust Arena, and Barack Obama tweeted his support. It seemed that the success of the Chicago Sky — and the WNBA at large — had generated at least some interest among the public.

So why then was it so hard for me to find a sports bar that would air any of the playoff games? I was disheartened by responses from local establishments, which turned me down even when I called ahead.

If I wasn’t met with outright denial, then I received answers like, “Well, it depends on what else is on.” And during an internet search for locations, I uncovered posts that were littered with misogynistic jabs, homophobic slurs and the ever-perplexing question that I hear most often: “Who cares?”

Who cares? I care. A lot of us care. And you should, too.

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes. Letters should be approximately 350 words or less.

Your establishment should be proud to present and support a league that has a history of fighting for representation, as the WNBA has long been at the forefront of social justice movements: It was the first professional sports league to establish a formal Pride campaign, and their players were among the first to showcase “Black Lives Matter” shirts before games.

Beyond these achievements, the WNBA dedicated its 2020 season to Breonna Taylor, who was slaughtered during a botched raid of her home by those sworn to protect her.

Women matter. Women’s sports matter. Put on the game.

Kendall Steinle, Pilsen

Where is the shared outrage?

It seems that some letter writers are quick to condemn the police officers who will not reveal their vaccine status. I have not seen that when it comes to Chicago teachers, not by the public nor by the mayor.

Chicago Public school teachers do not have to be vaccinated to keep their jobs nor reveal their status, only to get tested weekly, on school time and at school expense. That was negotiated with their union.

Mayor Lightfoot will not negotiate with the police union and instead has demanded that unvaccinated officers get tested twice weekly and at their expense.

Why the difference? The teachers stayed home for over a year while the police officers hit the streets, most of the time without adequate protective gear. No teacher has been laid off for lack of vaccine proof. So, all of those police bashers out there, the city is conducting a police hiring test, and the city needs officers. You should be first in line so you can effect the change that you want.

John Laskey, Palos Heights

Phil Kadner will be missed

I will miss the columns of Phil Kadner, who I came to know and admire for his work with the Chicago Southland. He knew the Southland and its role in the Chicago metro area; he understood its needs, and he advocated on its behalf. He was/is a true “news reporter, columnist and editor,” as he states in his last column for the Chicago Sun-Times.

He put aside the “little stuff” to discuss critical improvements, especially when they could, like the South Suburban Airport, help to “level the playing field.” He gave my late husband, Suhail al Chalabi, his most honest obituary, calling him, “One of the great champions of Southland economic development.” Concluding his column, he said, “He was a friend to the Southland and a visionary. He will be missed.” It is an apt and worthy description of Phil himself.

I hope he’ll continue to write — collecting all he knows and has done — into the book, that we all need, to know and understand the Southland and our country.

Margery al Chalabi. Chicago

Political theater

I can’t believe S.E. Cupp actually thinks Republican opposition to abortion is anything but political theater. It most certainly isn’t about the sanctity of life. The right loves killing people with aggressive policing, the death penalty, restricting access to health care, removing environmental and occupational safety regulations and, of course, propagating misinformation about COVID-19.

Don Anderson, Oak Park

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