I like Big Swole. Enjoyed Big Swole’s wrestling. But her remarks over the lack of diversity in AEW aren’t easily detectable.
In fact, I’ve always thought of AEW as a true international collection of what professional wrestling has to offer.
But diversity and AEW are in the spotlight after Swole voiced concern in an exit interview with the company after her contract was allowed to expire.
You may or may not agree with her. But we should all be taking her remarks seriously. And we should see this as an opportunity to audit what we’re watching. This will make the AEW product better.
The only aspect of her remarks that bounces off of an empty space in the company is the presence of a black champion with the promotion. And that vaccuum could be filled by Jade Cargill this week, who can not only become the TBS Women’s Champion, but the first ever.
If it doesn’t happen this week, we shouldn’t get angry. It will happen.
The demanding wrestling community often forgets how young AEW is. They also forget that WWE would go on long stretches without any diversity among their title holders. It takes time to do this correctly and most importantly, with sincerity.
And let’s also not forget that this is a major television product that is now stretching across multiple networks. Diversity isn’t just the right thing. It’s the smart thing.
TV executives understand a bigger tent means more viewers. Advertisers understand that diversity means a potentially larger market share of their product. Its big business.
It’s unfortunate the AEW and Big Swole sepration turned out this way. But AEW should listen and see this as an opportunity to make a good product only better.