Now even senators are rallying around the U.S. women's hockey team. Good.

You may not see Team USA on the ice at the women's hockey world championships, which begin on March 30, in Michigan.

Players on the U.S. women's national team are planning to boycott the tournament over what they consider pathetically low wages and a general lack of support from USA Hockey, the team's governing association.

The U.S. women's team went home with the silver medal at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Photo by Alexander Nemenov/AFP/Getty Image.


The athletes are reportedly paid just $1,000 a month during the six-month Olympic residency period and "virtually nothing" the other 3.5 years between Olympic games — even though they continue to train and compete in other events. Astoundingly, many of the players hold second and third jobs to make ends meet.

Fortunately, it appears lots of other people — including a handful of powerful U.S. senators and stars on the U.S. men's team — are in the women's corner.

In response to the charges of unfair wages and benefits, Team USA players spread the word using the hashtag #BeBoldForChange.

Their many supporters followed suit.

Hannah Beckman, a New Jersey Rocket, wants to play on Team USA someday, but under much fairer circumstances.

Olympic medalist Julie Chu of the Les Canadiennes knows that taking a stand takes guts, and she's committed to standing strong.

Johnny Laursen, who plays for the USA Warriors, a team made of wounded service members, said "silent is what [he] won't be."

Tennis champion Billie Jean King spoke out in support of equality too.

And Amanda Kessel, who plays on the women's team, said she's sitting this one out for all the younger players watching at home...

Players like Daria, a future hockey star.

And Annie, who knows she can hang with boys on the ice too.

And every other girl who deserves better than the status quo.

On March 27, the women's team gained a handful of other high profile supporters: 14 U.S. senators.

In a fiery letter to USA Hockey executive director Dave Ogrean, more than a dozen senators — including Elizabeth Warren, Dianne Feinstein, and Cory Booker — asked the organization hear out the players' demands and respond appropriately.

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images.

"We are disturbed by reports from the U.S. Women's National Hockey Team suggesting that USA Hockey is not providing 'equitable support' to female athletes," the senators wrote, noting the inequality goes far beyond a paycheck. "While USA Hockey provides its male athletes with a 'seemingly endless' supply of hockey equipment, for example, female players are often expected to 'buy their own.'"

Here is an excerpt from the full letter:

The U.S. Women's National Hockey Team has medaled in every Olympics since 1998, when Women's Hockey was first added as an Olympic Sport. The team has won gold medals at the IIHF World Championships for the past three years in a row. As Megan Duggan, team captain, announced last week, the women's team has "represented our country with dignity and deserves to be treated with fairness and respect." We urge you to resolve this dispute quickly to ensure that the USA Women's National Hockey Team receives equitable resources.

It appears as though USA Hockey hasn't taken the team's demands all that seriously thus far.

Last week, after players began announcing plans to sit out, the organization started reaching out to second- and third-tier players to fill the roster. In an act of solidarity, many of those athletes — including goalie Brittany Ott, whose tweet is below — have refused to step in and play.

News of the boycott has been rumbling online in recent weeks, as more and more groups — including athlete unions representing the NHL, NBA, NFL, and MLB — have spoken out in support of the women's team.

On March 26, athlete agent Allan Walsh reported the U.S. men's team might even boycott their world championship games in solidarity with the women's team.

They're scheduled to play in France and Germany in May.

It's important to note that while athletes on the men's and women's teams are paid equally by USA Hockey, all of the men are NHL players — their paychecks from being on the national team is a drop in the bucket. It's a different story for the women.

As writer Jessica Luther pointed out online, if the men's team follows through with their own boycott, it's a great example of turning allyship into real action.

The women's boycott, however, may be avoidable if all goes well at a USA Hockey emergency board meeting being held on March 27.

Board members are expected to vote on a deal that reportedly includes significant wage increases and improved benefits for players.

"[Reaching a deal with better wages and benefits] is our chance to make history for every woman on the ice today and every little girl who's just lacing up her skates for the first time," women's team forward Hilary Knight explained to USA Today. "We're hopeful for them and for us that we'll get the change that is long overdue."

This article may be updated with information on the board meeting vote.

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In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

1 / 12

Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

Who would have thought that giving the world access to all human knowledge via the internet, the ability to follow and hear from experts on any subject via social media, and the ability to see what's happening anywhere in the world via smartphones with cameras would result in a terrifying percentage of the population believing and spouting nothing but falsehoods day in and day out?

Those of us who value facts, reason, and rational thought have found ourselves at some of our fellow citizens and thinking, "Really? THIS is how you choose to use the greatest tool humanity has ever created? To spew unfounded conspiracy theories?"

It's a marvel, truly.

Between Coronavirus/Bill Gates/5G conspiracies and QAnon/Evil Cabal/Pedophile conspiracies, I thought we were pretty much full up on kooky for 2020. But apparently not. The massive fires up and down the West Coast have ignited even more conspiracy theories, some of which local law enforcement and even the FBI have had to debunk.

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True

In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

1 / 12

Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

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Katie Neeves (L) photo by Jayne Walsh, JK Rowling (R) photo by Sjhill, CC BY-SA 3.0

Dear JK Rowling,

I am writing this letter to say a big thank you to you. You may think it strange that a gobby trans woman such as me would wish to thank you after all your recent transphobic outpourings, but let me explain…

I certainly don't thank you for your lengthy essay last month where you describe the abuse you have suffered (for which you have my sympathy) and in which you stated that you do not hate trans people, while at the same time peddling even more anti-trans mis-information. Sadly, your diatribe directly caused some trans children to self-harm and other to attempt suicide.

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