Flat White

Goodbye Giants, but I don’t need your virtue signalling

14 June 2020

5:03 PM

14 June 2020

5:03 PM

Dear Tony

I have enclosed my 2019 GWS Premium Membership Card which you might like to pass onto one of your players to kneel on before their next game.

This effectively ends my 70-year association with Australian Rules Football. I played my first game as a five-year-old at St Joseph’s in Orbost, Victoria. I continued playing into my late 30s and have rarely missed watching a match since then.

My all-time hero was Ronnie Edwards – an indigenous full-forward for Orbost who will never be forgotten by those who had the good fortune to witness his instinctive magic on the field in the East Gippsland Football League.

Three of my nephews played the game for Carlton, St Kilda and Brisbane – one won a Brownlow.

I have marvelled at the skills of our indigenous players over the years and I believe AFL clubs have done a great job implementing programs to meet their needs and to equip them for life beyond football.

However, in recent years I have become increasingly concerned over the introduction of woke politics into the sport by the AFL hierarchy. They seem to have forgotten that people go to the footy to be entertained – not indoctrinated!

The vision of players going down on their knees in reaction to an incident that had nothing to do with Australia was the most cringeworthy thing I have ever seen.

There was a time when footballers, like the great Ron Barassi’s father, left the game to don the uniform and died along with their mates in defence of our Australian values.

Today I feel the AFL would make them don rainbow skirts and do protest jigs for the media.

Perhaps the AFL should be now be split into two – one as a registered political body and the other as a professional football body.

When that happens I may return to watch the game – but until then its goodbye for now.


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