Ever since the Women's World Cup final this summer, the women of the United States soccer team have been empowering women across the country. Earlier this week, President Obama stood surrounded by the winning team as he honored their World Cup victory in a speech.
"This team taught all of America's children that playing like a girl means you're a badass," he said in the speech. "Playing like a girl means being the best...It means taking yourself and your country to the top of the world."
Despite the lighthearted tone of the speech, President Obama's words draw attention to several gender-based issues, including the pay gap that the U.S. Women's soccer team faced earlier this year. Business Insider reported that while FIFA awarded $2 million to the women's team for their victory, the average men's team in the 2014 finals took home about $10 million.
While there are still discrepancies in pay and TV coverage of all women's sports, it's encouraging to see an influential leader like President Obama recognizing the U.S. Women's soccer team for their hard work and acheivements. Between the President's support and the victory of an amazingly talented team, we can continue to bring national attention to a side of sports that is too often overlooked.