Less than a week ago I let loose on Twitter with a rant aimed at the Apex Predator of wrestling journalism Dave Meltzer. This was specifically about his comments on women’s wrestling, including the quote “The deal with women’s wrestling in the U.S. is that you are supposed to say it’s good even when it’s not.”
No, Dave, that’s not the deal.
And in the Twitter rant I addressed the fact that we have gone through years of being told women’s wrestling in the US is bad because women are involved. Also, how the attitude of “it’s not good because they don’t wrestle LIKE MEN” is an inherently sexist opinion. Why does “like the boys” have to be the standard? Women in wrestling should be innovating, not just trying to mimic what the guys are doing in hopes of a pat on the head. They don’t want to be as good as the boys, they want to be better and, in more cases than Meltzer will admit, they are.
But now, less than a week later, Meltzer opens his mouth again and spews out some tripe about how Peyton Royce and Billie Kay were “hotter in NXT,” specifically citing Peyton looking like she’s gained weight in his opinion.
Thankfully, Peyton shot back at him immediately, because they don’t just call her “Iconic” for no reason, folks.
So what would you have me do Dave… starve myself? 🤯🤯🤯 This is how nightmares for young women start. The females in your life must be proud. https://t.co/8MNpZNsR7m
— Peyton Royce (@PeytonRoyceWWE) August 15, 2018
I tend to try to limit my vulgarity when writing for this site, but I’m going to repeat a point I’ve made twice in 6 days:
Dave Meltzer Retire Bitch.
Because we don’t need him anymore. There are plenty of voices out there ready and willing to give you their take on modern wrestling. Do you need someone to arbitrarily assign a star rating to a match? Want someone to downplay anything good happening in WWE because it’s WWE? Searching for a wrestling hipster to throw money and attention at? Good news, I’m willing to do all of these things if it means we can finally toss Meltzer and his ilk out the back door and tell them not to come back.
If your contributions in a day and age where WWE is headed towards their first all-women’s PPV are “I don’t want to get called sexist for my opinions, by the way this girl got fat since her call-up” then we don’t need you here. I’ve spoken before about how the Women’s Revolution/Evolution isn’t just limited to the ring, it should be a revolution on all levels. This includes hiring women and non-binary people for your wrestling websites and YouTube channels, and featuring their work and opinions as prominently as your men. It also includes dumping the likes of Dave Meltzer from your radar.
Allowing this kind of sexism, even unconscious or “I didn’t mean it to be sexist” at that level of “respectable wrestling journalism” (and c’mon, folks, let’s be frank here, there really isn’t such a thing) only fuels the sort of behavior that we’ve witnessed online from people angry that women are allowed to be in the spotlight. It encourages bad behavior at live shows and tapings, including at this year’s Mae Young Classic, a tournament specifically for women’s wrestling.
Because there are people who will claim Meltzer isn’t sexist. I saw this last week when there were claims of how much he supported women’s joshi in Japan. But when you have that singular example versus the mounting evidence and comments about US women’s wrestling and US women, plus his snide remark about how NJPW has “hotter female fans,” it starts to feel less like “an argument against sexism” and more “I support Japanese women because I think they’re hotter.” I’m not stating for a fact that Meltzer has confused his support for what he personally considers attractive or fetishizes, but I am saying that’s the vibe I get from a lot of this.
No matter what, Meltzer should be enough of a professional to know that his comments on someone’s weight, man or woman, are ridiculous. But especially how horrible it is to think your commentary on a woman’s attractiveness because of her weight is even valid. This comes after Paige very publicly had someone scream in her face about how “fat” she’s gotten, after an entire fat-shaming storyline WWE did leading up to Wrestlemania and, I assume, the knowledge of how many women in wrestling have struggled with eating disorders, because don’t tell me all of a sudden Dave Meltzer doesn’t know something like that.
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