Last week the AFL endorsed marriage fakery and elicited the praise of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who hailed the move as social progress. Clearly, though, it is not enough progress, as the absence of equality for many other disparate and dis-similar things has yet to be rectified. Therefore, with this weekend’s AFL Grand Final in mind, let me make this urgent plea for “equality” as defined in contemporary and fashionable parlance:
Before Saturday’s contest between the Tigers and Crows,
- abolish all boundaries, as they embody the arbitrary limitations that constrained the imagination of the game’s inventor, Tom Wills. A product of his times, Wills’ view of what is permissible and what is not reflected his Victorian era, not our enlightened age.
- More important, rugby teams must be invited to play in the AFL Grand Final. Rugger buggers love a game involving a football of roughly the same shape and all love is equal, is it not?
These changes could be implemented at a moment’s notice were the AFL’s poobahs to emulate the solons who decide what belongs in the Macquarie Dictionary. When Julia Gillard branded Tony Abbott a misogynist while defending a man who likened ladies’ genitalia to marine bivalves, the Macquarie folks immediately amended their definition to match that of the then-PM.
If the AFL quivers at the thought of implementing such policies – policies bound to inflame adverse opinion amongst many in the grandstands – it could draw courage from the Australian Medical Association, which has the right attitude in regard to members and the value of their opinions.
The AMA’s leaders didn’t bother to canvas members’ views before issuing its gay-marriage edict, nor should the AFL. Here the NRL provides the cues. At its Grand Final, the pre-game entertainment will be provided by US rapper Macklemore who will singing (after a fashion) the praises of same-sex unions. Perhaps, as the NRL is into expanding supporters’ horizons by fiat, Mr Macklemore might also don a false nose and treat the crowd to his antisemitic Thrift Shop number.
Of course, NRL fans might just decide to boo Mr Macklemore’s performance, drown him out with their howling derision. That would send a message to the competition’s administrators, who would need to turn up the public address system to 11 to mask the dissent and disgust of those who object to a sporting code re-painting its escutcheon in the rainbow colours of social activism.
The little people don’t think it is the business of sporting bodies to be concerning themselves with anything but sport, but what do they know! They are not members of the elite, just the bums on seats whose expenditures on tickets and memberships keep the whole thing going.
On the field, the AFL and NRL big games will have their winners and losers.
In those codes’ corporate suites the elites cannot afford to lose, not if they are to continue dictating standards of behaviour in areas well beyond the limits of their linament-scented purview.