Adam Goodes says he doesn’t want to just be remembered as a footballer.
I’d say he’s probably going to get his wish and a lot more. Given his latest outburst claiming that Australia is a racist nation based on lies, Goodes is well on the way to making sure that he’s not remembered as a footballer at all.
And that is a pity, because that is what Goodes is actually good at. He is athletic, has great skills and can play the game very well. He’s won two premierships and has twice been recognised as the best player in the league.
But Goodes won’t be remembered for any of that. He’ll be remembered as a sook and Australia’s least favourite Australian of the Year. Let’s hope that we never have another one who is so proud of bullying a little girl into a police interrogation cell.
As I have written previously, that entire incident was a disgrace. If footballers don’t want to be compared to big, hairy gorillas, they should get another job. After all, they are paid a small fortune to entertain the masses by thuggishly chasing a bit of pigskin around a modern coliseum. Just like a bunch of monkeys.
And if Goodes is doing everything possible to ensure he’s not remembered as a footballer, he’s also doing just as good a job making sure that he is remembered as a terrible historian.
That’s because he can’t even get his facts straight about what’s going on today.
Goodes claims that children are taught that Captain Cook ‘founded’ Australia. That’s not true and that’s why no one is able to produce any textbooks to back up his statement. Furthermore, children aren’t taught that this great explorer even ‘found’ Australia either. He is celebrated for being the first European to discover and chart our eastern coastline.
Anyone who knows anything about history will know that James Cook was not the first European explorer to reach Australia. And you don’t even need to be a historian to know this.
In 1985, as Australians were gearing up for the bicentennial celebrations, letters were whizzing around the country with stamps commemorating the other men who reached Australia before Cook and who were even shipwrecked here.
1985 Australian stamps depicting artefacts from shipwrecks in Australia between 1629 and 1727.
1985 Australian stamps commemorating explorers who discovered parts of Australia before James Cook.
And the year before these issues were released was the very first bicentennial stamp issue.
Guess what it featured? That’s right: Aboriginal art.
The very first set of Australian stamps celebrating the 1988 Bicentenary.
So much for Goodes’ claims. Schoolkids have been cataloguing and collecting stamps depicting key moments in Australian history for a long time and they all know that the Australian of the Year is speaking rubbish.
If Goodes really wants to address the lies, he should start by putting a halt to the myth of invasion.
There was no invasion. There was no war. There was no genocide.
And if anyone did try genocide, then they could rightly be described as pretty lousy mass murderers.
There was, however, a settlement. And despite claims of 40,000 years of Aboriginal presence on this continent, it was not until 1788 that civilisation arrived.
It is true to say that the import of foreign diseases took a terrible toll on the indigenous populations.
But it is also true to say that there was hunger and hardship for those who did not know the land. And they faced the same diseases as well.
And there were sporadic atrocities. They were carried out not only by some settlers, but by some of the Aboriginals as well. Any historian who tries to portray these incidents as somehow being central to the story of Australia since 1788 is really missing the forest for the clump of grass way off in the distance.
The big story is that a vast and empty continent inhabited by a small population of nomads was transformed into a civilised and prosperous nation, with opportunity for all. And if that opportunity is not taken, the responsibility does not lie with Captain Cook, or with some hardworking farmer who cleared a block of land with his hands in the 1850s. It lies with the self-piteous individual who has a sense of entitlement that is only beaten in size by his victim mentality.
Adam Goodes should ponder that. And he should also reassess his view of ‘racist’ laws and programs in Australia.
If Goodes is really intent on removing these things, he should get up and can Abstudy.
I’ll tell you why. Our government says that one ‘race’ is worthy of more money than any other. That would be the Aboriginal race. Hence the name ‘Abstudy’.
It is an inherently racist program.
Now I readily admit that some Aboriginals live in difficult conditions. But their Aboriginality is not central to that. Family dysfunction and a cultural malaise are the primary factors for this situation.
And, sadly, there are non-Aboriginal people also living in the same circumstances.
If the government really wants to address these issues, it should not take a racist approach, but a rational approach that provides support based on circumstances instead of skin colour. And that support should not entrench the problems, but should encourage people to take their own initiative to rise above them.
Let’s hear the Australian of the Year back that.