The pictures of Ines Sainz's tightly encased backside keep cropping up in the media, cited as evidence that the TV Azteca reporter might have invited harassment from the New York Jets. The photos prove just one thing: Any opportunity to turn a good-looking woman's body into a news story will not go to waste.
All other elements of the Sainz controversy seem as ludicrous as complaints about dial-up Internet service. We should have been over this issue years ago.
Sainz got a press credential. She went to the locker room to do a job, to interview Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez for her network in Mexico. Her appearance drew attention.
At least one NFL player, the reliably thoughtless Clinton Portis, drew the conclusion that because Sainz was ogle-worthy, she went into the locker room to ogle players. Portis soon apologized, bowing to team pressure much faster than he had retracted his support for Michael Vick's dogfighting three years ago.
Since we're in this spot again, let's clarify the one misconception about equal access that never seems to die. There is no double standard for female and male athletes. No major women's sport denies male reporters access to the locker room if it admits female interviewers.
Ask anyone on the Stanford women's basketball team. At the Final Four last spring, male and female reporters went into their locker room. The same mix did interviews in the Cardinal women's locker room during the Charlotte Final Four 15 years ago and in the Stanford Stadium locker rooms during practices for the Women's World Cup semifinals in 1999.
On those occasions, did male reporters get a glimpse of nude young women? Probably not. Female athletes will either slip away and change in the bathroom during the open-locker room period, or wait a long, long time to clean up if that's what they must do to accommodate the media.
But that's rarely enough to get attention for their sports, so female athletes -- from swimmer Amanda Beard to the Australian soccer team -- often resort to posing naked. For some reason, NFL players never have to take that route.