#1107 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 2 August 2015
Former Australian of the year and two-time Brownlow medallist Adam Goodes is a sporting champion who should unite rather than divide us.
Yet the Indigenous athlete is repeatedly booed by spectators and slammed by media commentators, raising accusations of racism. The Race Discrimination Commissioner has labelled the booing as ugly and damaging to the AFL.
Journalist Stan Grant said, “I can tell you how Adam Goodes feels. Every Indigenous person has felt it.”
And Fairfax columnist Waleed Ali said:
Australia is generally a very tolerant society until its minorities demonstrate that they don’t know their place… the minute someone in a minority position acts as though they’re not a mere supplicant, then we lose our minds. And we say, ‘No, no, you’ve got to get back in your box.’
We must never condone racial vilification. No one should ever be called an “ape” or told to “go back to the zoo.” No one. Ever.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.