This will probably get lost in the shuffle of news this week. After all, CM Punk makes his long-awaited return to WWE this week, but actually not really. Also, NXT has a fighting chance to beat AEW in the Nielsen ratings by piling on Smackdown and Raw superstars, which is huge news if you’re literally a commercial. There’s something else that happened in recent weeks that snuck under the radar. It shouldn’t have been ignored by several outlets, but it was. ROH General Manager thinks women aren’t people – well, not people who should be able to eat, anyway.
During a twitter rampage that Joey Mercury went on after being fired from ROH, he outed General Manager Greg Gilleland for being what some might consider misogynistic. Kelly Klein, current ROH Women’s champion, makes less than $24,000 a year. To put that into perspective, someone who works in fast food will likely make about as much as a woman in ROH, if not more. Fantastic news for those of you who feel your job at McDonald’s is the laughing stock of all your friends. Now when nerds get picked on during recess, instead of thinking “yeah well in 10 years you’ll be flipping my burger,” they’ll be thinking “yeah well in 10 years you’ll be a woman who represents an entire division whose likeness they’ll use for marketing purposes but whose presence isn’t worth the same pay as flipping my burgers.” Kids these days.
When Klein asked her boss for a raise through an email like a professional, he professionally told her to go fuck herself because if he paid her a reasonable amount then he’d have to pay every woman that much. It doesn’t take a genius to understand that this means the other women make as much or less than Klein. She assures him that she wouldn’t discuss her pay with other employees per ROH’s guidelines, but I’d be remiss in not mentioning how absolutely illegal that is. An employer can’t prevent an employee from discussing pay. The archaic policy that prevented coworkers from spilling the beans about how much they make was started to prevent…. Well to prevent this very thing. They didn’t want women finding out that men made significantly more than them.
Before everyone runs to the comment section spouting at me the generic “SJW,” “White Knight,” or “Ruggedly Good Looking” comments, I want to note that if this story were about a Kevin Klein, I’d feel the same way. It just so happens that Kelly Klein is a woman and that her situation impacts all the other women on the roster. I’d never be in favor of anyone being treated as less than human no matter what gender or race they were. The fact is, though, that this is about women and Kelly Klein is a woman. I don’t make the rules.
You might think to yourself that a lot of people live off $24,000 a year. That’s true but as a general rule most people don’t get smashed in the face with a steel chair. Most people aren’t told to go to work with a concussion which is something that happened to Klein. Also – and I’m making a huge assumption here – Most people aren’t supposed to be the champion of their division. Yes, titles aren’t real, but what the champion is supposed to represent from a business standpoint is 100% real. If you don’t think someone is worth the pennies you’re spending on them then maybe don’t make them champion and invest television time on them? Don’t focus an entire division around them? Just a weird thought from someone who’s never ran a wrestling business but also isn’t misogynistic POS simultaneously.