The whole racism issue never seems to go away, especially in sport. In recent days much has been said about the Indigenous AFL superstar Adam Goodes. To make my point, I bring into the story AFL player Adam Cooney to represent the Anglo Saxons and use his surname as the basis for the vulgar reference, “Coon”, a term once used to describe Indigenous folk.
I had a dream. And in that dream a football match was played.
It was Round 19 Sunday August 4th 2013 at Etihad Stadium.
The Western Bulldogs versus the Sydney Swans.
The stage was set as two Brownlow medallists prepared to do battle. But the much anticipated contest had been overshadowed by concerns from some very nervous people in the media. Especially the commentators. They felt the Cooney Goodes match up was too risky to call. Nobody wanted to risk being vilified for innuendo or a perceived racial slur. It could be career ending. But there was no getting around it. Another slip of the tongue could result in a riot.
The 2013 Indigenous round had been a disaster and served only to perpetuate the very thing it was trying to eradicate. The AFL needed something, anything to put a stop to the bigotry still evident in our game.
And in this dream there was a solution. Adam Cooney and Adam Goodes looked at one another. They realised they shared more than a name. They were the same. They were both human.
They shook hands, returned to their respective teams and played a game of football