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The Adam Goodes Documentary

Okay, so I know this blog will start up a few of the usual suspects, but, I watched the doco last night and it hasn't changed my opinion one bit!

To begin with, I watch a lot of AFL footy and follow the game with the same fervour as I do Rugby League so my observations on the game should be given at the least the same weight that you blokes would give yourselves on your observations of Rugby League.

Adam Goodes got booed mercilessly, all over the country, for three years, every round - from 2013 to 2015 up until his retirement.

It began in 2013 when he called out a 13 year old girl for calling him an 'ape' and her subsequent ejection from the ground. It continued with his awarding of the Australian of the Year gong in 2014 and solidified in 2015 when he performed a 'war dance' during the Indigenous Round.

Now, a documentary was shown last night on Channel 10 which, on its face, described Goodes' situation from the commencement of the booing in 2013 until his retirement in 2015 - and it included footage of the commentary, from both sides, at the time and subsequently.

Ultimately, two of the principal purposes of the documentary was to pose the questions, "Was the booing of Adam Goodes racially motivated?", and, "Is Australia a racist country?". The airing of the documentary has, as expected, re-energised the debate, on both sides - and most pertinently on talk back radio today.

Rather than summarising the 'arguments', I'm going to point out a few facts!

Fact 1: Lindsay Thomas of the North Melbourne Kangaroos was routinely criticised for 'taking dives' or 'staging'. He would often get hit off the ball but, because he used to hurl himself on the ground like a South American soccer player, never got free kicks awarded to him.

He was an Aboriginal footy player and never got booed for his antics.

Fact 2: Players get booed all the time for 'dog acts' during a game of footy! Jeremy Cameron on the Giants got booed when he took out Harris Andrews of the Brisbane Lions (and was subsequently hit with a 5 week suspension) at the Gabba.

When Cameron returned from suspension, he did not get booed at any ground.

Fact 3: Gary Abblett Jnr - a practical god of the game - spent the first few rounds hitting blokes in the head and out of play. He also agreed with Dickhead Folau that gays should go to hell because he's a God botherer too!

After getting off blatant "Josh Maguire grub acts" for two weeks in a row, he got done the third time. Before he copped a one week suspension, and after agreeing with Folau, he got booed for about 5 minutes during a game on Easter Monday whilst playing against the Hawks - an opponent that his serious history with his Cats. He has subsequently not been booed.

Fact 4: Players get booed when they play against their old teams. This has gone on since the beginning of team sport in this country! Happens all the time. But tends to be limited to the first few games that the departed player plays against his old team and never happens at other times.

Fact 5: Indigenous and non Indigenous players are booed at the same level. True! Des Headland of the Dockers got booed for beating the crap out of Adam Selwood of the Eagles after Selwood made a racial and family slur against Headland duing a game at Subiaco in 2007. Seriously ugly incident - and Headland (the Aboriginal player) was not foreign to controversy whereas Selwood was a cleanskin.

Nobody booed either player after that particular game through the rest of the career.

Fact 6: Adam Goodes got booed every SINGLE week for 3 years! After calling out a white girl for calling him an Ape, for being awarded Australian of the Year, for being outspoken about racisim and for doing a war dance no different to the insufferable Haka that we, apparently, all love!

Fact 7: There were 71 Aboriginal players at that time and only Adam Goodes got booed!

True. Most Indigenous players are lauded for their speed, skills and application to the game - like Cyril Rioli. But Indigenous players hardly every 'take a stand'. When they do, like Nicky Winmar, Michael Long and Adam Goodes, they cop it mercilessly and only history grants them so much as a hall pass for their courage.

Now, if you think that Goodes got booed because he:

1. Staged for free kicks; or
2. Played dirty; or
3. Lived a charmed life with the judiciary,

I've blown your arguments out of the water with the provable and verifiable facts listed above.

The difference between Goodes and all the other 'villains' is that Adam Goodes had the audacity to call out casual and blatent racism and used his, albeit politically awarded platform of Australian of the Year, to try to start a productive conversation.

Not everyone that booed Goodes is a 'racist'. Not everyone that dislikes Goodes is a 'racist'. Because, in the eyes of so many in the country - and propogated by true bigots like Sam Newman, Alan Jones, Andrew Bolt, Miranda Devine and the usual 'conservative' suspects, 'racisim' is a concept limited to the thoughtless and thuggish hurling of offensive ad-hominems towards folks of a different culture. 

Racisim is also when one is not prepared to accept that someone, of a different culture, wants to have a reasonable, meaningful and fruitful conversation, and is completely shut down; when one is not prepared to listen to an Indigenous man speak of his struggle and its lack of parity with Sam Newman's struggle with being a "Protestant, heterosexual white man" in modern day Australia; when one takes offence to the concept that 'white priviledge' truly exists, yet it's not the fault of the silent white 'man in the street'!

This whole situation saddens me.

I'm a halfie and my wife is black - but I've never felt even the slightest tinge of bigotry towards me - and so lucky me! My wife hasn't been so lucky in her country of origin, the USA, and apparently, Adam Goodes hasn't in his country of origin, Australia.

That, in and of itself, should give us all reason to take pause.

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  • Goodes needs to get over himself, massive wood duck and victim, cant stand the bloke.

    Sometimes players get boo'd because they are tools, this is a perfect example.

    • I might be wrong Snakey, but I don't reckon you watch a lot of AFL. I watched Adam Goodes from when he began he career until the end of his career and he was absolutely not a tool.

      Unlike so many blokes in the AFL, rather than whacking his direct opponent before the first bounce, he'd shake his opponent's hand.

      Never had a bad word to say about anybody on the footy field and a good friend of mine's wife used to be marketting manager at the Swans and said that Goodes, unlike a few other blokes at the Swans whom I'm sure you could probably guess, would always come into the club, say hello to all the staff (not just the players) and treated everyone really well.

      I don't know Adam Goodes personally but I've heard so many good things from people whom I respect (like my friend's wife) and Paul Roos.

      Sure, he did say things that were 'polarising' when he was Australian of the Year but he didn't say anything different to Mandawuy Yunupingu when he was named Australian of the Year and he didn't cop any shit!

      I really feel sorry for the bloke.

      Adam Goodes was not a serial grub like Josh Maguire and George Burgess, was not a cheat like Cameron Smith and was not a 'victim' like Choc Mundine, but he was treated worse than any of those blokes!

      P.S. Players that are tools do get booed. But not even the greatest of tool players get booed every week for 3 years! You gotta admit that there was more at play on this one.

      • You got me there bro, dont watch much AFL, just sick of hearing him always whinging about something or crying about the rights of some minority group, hes a social justice warrior and im just getting sick of them bro.

        • Anthony  Mundine is hated not because he is aboriginal  but because  he is a dickhead , but he and dopes like him want to bring out the race card because  they don't want to admit that people don't lIke them becaise of their behaviour. 

          Adam Goodes was booed for 3 years and some think it was all because he was aboriginal  , if that was the case did other aboriginal  AFL players get booed for 3 years? 


          Perhaps instead doing a documentary on a issue very few care about they should do a documentary  on the number of homeless people  living  in Australia  or on how we let aboriginals live like 3rd world people while we spend 100s of millions  each year on useless refugees  . 

        • So basically BM just called you out and you had no reply to him being attacked for 3 years but your opionion matters 2 whom. LOL get a life if you do not know the entire story didnt watch AFL and you go out and claim bla bla bla.

          Who sound like a complete Dick ??  Snake

      • People were off Goodes because he publicly humiliated a little girl. If it was my kid I'd have flogged her but it's nobody's place to publicly shame other people's children, even if they're Nazis. I guess he was in a tough position, with a child hurling racial abuse, but hundred kilo millionaires need to recognise they're near the top of society, regardless of their race, while fat ugly bogan girls are near the bottom.

        • All he did was make security aware of the comments being made. He also then went on air and said she is also an innocent child and to leave her alone and move on. He was having a bad day he made the call because he felt the need to stop the being called an ape due to his heritage by a child. Maybe he didnt think the process at the time and it was just a snap im pissed you need to shut your mouth opportunity. Im 100% sure he protected that child from the incident after and there are many press confrences where he did say this was not her fault and leave it alone and the incident. The AFL fucked it all up.

    • 1000%.

      Something about that dickhead rubbed me the wrong way and has absolutely zero to do with his skin colour or the fact he is an aboriginie.

    • Interesting take in the 2014 Australian of the year. 

  • The prime minister can say sorry to him on behalf of the nation, that will fix things........ 

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