The Importance Placed on the Large Salaries of Athletes

This paper explores online articles on the statistical data gathered to demonstrate the pay earned for the majority of occupations in the United States. The data is further broken down by gender, sex, occupation, and even the academic requirements to attain each position. The data is important in this paper because it makes it visually appealing when comparing occupations. Also, it lets readers know what jobs are in demand, secure, and attainable for future possibilities. It also allows for readers to view the growing gap in income from the “poor” to the extremely wealthy.

I also share my opinion on the influence of sports on our society and its cultural impact then and now.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in the United States, men made on average about $49,192 a year, and women earned $39,888. The highest-paid athletes in the U.S. earn a minimum of $400,000 to begin with, not including money from endorsements, fan support and their yearly pay increase based on their performance.

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I personally, do not have anything against sports or the talented athletes who entertain the millions of fans who follow them. But if the hundreds of fans who pay a combined, billions of dollars, on sports memorabilia, attendance of games, sports gear, etc., which in result supports professional athletes, then they can put the same amount of effort and financial aid into supporting their community. By providing better funding and training to teachers, paramedics, and police officers, it could result in a more educated, safer, and inviting community that would benefit all.

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Below is a chart to demonstrate the pay of professional athletes, police officers, paramedics, and teachers, to show the comparison for each occupation. Profession Pay Professional athletes (NFL,MLB,NBA, NHL, MLS) $2.1 million-$6.2 million Police officers / Detectives $61,600 Paramedics / EMT $32,670 Teachers (Pre-School-Elementary) (High School) $55,336 / $58,030 It is evident that there is a major difference in pay. I believe, most communities demand or even expect for more police presence to prevent crimes and make citizens feel safe and protected, but they do not realize that a lot of stations are undermanned and poorly funded. Not only is it difficult for police stations to maintain an average retention rate of recruits, it is also challenging to appeal to individuals to consider joining the academy in the first place.

The slow promoting system, long hours, low morale, and the pressure of society for police officers to perform under strenuous circumstances are additional stressors added to individuals when considering to join. Teachers also have quite a demanding role when it comes to being educators and following all the policies and regulations the school and state mandates they adhere to. Studies have shown most teachers switch schools, occupations, or are just very discouraged after their first year of teaching. The majority of first-year teachers find it difficult because depending on the school, the teacher has to prepare the curriculum on their own, master time management, all while trying to cater to the needs of each individual student, especially the ones who are more challenging. With all those stressors combined, teachers may find it easier to choose another path, especially because their pay isn’t as glamorous as an athlete’s income.

Becoming a paramedic is also a difficult career choice one might make. The immense amount of hours it takes to become certified and also the health issues and risks that come with the job, in the long run, can be overwhelming. Ultimately, these individuals choose to be selfless and belong in a demanding, rewarding career that influences lives for the better. Why does are society put so much importance on athletes over public safety officers and academics? While athletes are very talented, skilled individuals who perform above and beyond an average person’s physical capabilities, our society has idolized these performers for many years. I believe people look up to athletes for many reasons such as, being enthralled by their performance, their lifestyles, and the athlete’s personal history as well. Many fans, I believe, better relate to and admire more, an athlete who speaks of their upbringing, and of the challenges and hardships they endured to get where they are in life. That in itself can be inspirational for people to better themselves or change something about themselves or their habits, whether it is something minute as going for a walk, starting a new hobby, or eating healthier, seeing athletes they relate to and look up to gives them the motivation to change.

I think our society has respect and admiration for our police officers, teachers, and paramedics but it seems like because what they do goes on behind the scenes and they aren’t as magnified in the media as much as athletes and celebrities, people seem to forget all that they do. The benefits of providing better funding for individuals who provide public services to the community are outstanding. Money allocated to schools could mean new textbook materials, better salary for existing teachers, opportunity to hire more teachers, all resulting in a better approach of teaching students and shortening the achievement gap. If more money was budgeted to support our police officers, it could culminate in a work environment with more colleagues, increase chances of promotion, and be better trained and equipped in order to stay current with the changing times.

Which would also lead to a more positive, involved police presence in the community, deterring crime and providing a sense of safety. If more money was allocated for the training, equipment, and retention of paramedics then our communities and health and well-being of our paramedics would also be better. I personally don’t believe there should be such an importance placed on the salary of professional athletes over those who provide critical, life-saving, and life-changing services. I believe these people spend an immense amount of time being devoted to being the best in their career field, to only receive a small fraction of pay compared to a professional athlete’s salary. Even though the career of a professional athlete is sometimes short lived, becoming infamous has opened many doors and opportunities for them to continue to make a good income. Ultimately, athletes will continue to receive their huge checks because of the love of sports our society has and because of the numerous ways the people support their individual teams.

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The Importance Placed on the Large Salaries of Athletes. (2021, Dec 20). Retrieved from

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