It’s high time to do away with religious dogma and associated preaching in sport. It’s an affront to me to literally brainwash people with attitudes that originated a couple of thousand years ago. More than that however, to hold on to and actively promote beliefs that clearly connote exclusivity by what they state is, to my mind, cruelty.
I wouldn’t ever seek to denounce a Holy book full of scriptures that are sacrosanct to millions, or possibly billions, but how about these God-faring sportspeople putting forward some passages that speak of inclusiveness, or, Heaven forbid, even love and understanding? For those attempting to force their centuries-old beliefs onto others; in doing so under the auspice of trying to ‘save’ the heathens among us from a rather fiery afterlife, even if somehow well-intended, is completely the wrong fit for sport.
As far as I’m aware and was taught, demonising others is in no way part of being a true Christian. That seems like hypocrisy in the extreme. By all means engage in a pre or after-game huddle to give Thanks, but leave things there. Quit with the social media preaching.
On another tack, is it not just a bit weird, when, in a scenario I’ve seen played out dozens of times, a boxer, after pummelling the living tar out of their opponent, will immediately give thanks to the man above for allowing them the opportunity to do so. And all usually said while the other guy is flat on his back on the canvas, semi-conscious and being attended by the medics. Theoretically the victory interview isn’t about giving thanks for the administered beating, it’s for the chance to get that far, but bizarre to my mind all the same.
The only thing we should truly be thankful for in all this sporting and secular schemozzle, viz-a vis Folau, is that there are people around such as the brave and brilliant TJ Perenara who are prepared to speak out against such prejudice. And when there are dinosaurs around like ex-Wallaby coach Alan Jones legitimising Folau’s call and doubling down in the name of that ever-increasing minefield, free speech, you know it’s definitely time to call a halt to it all.
Paul M (firstname.lastname@example.org)