Discussing the Matthew Johns affair

Crikey's readers join the fray on the Matthew Johns issue.

Crikey: Re. "SMH tech writer snagged in Johns group s-x storm" (14 May, item 19). Last Thursday Crikey attributed the following quotes to Sydney Morning Herald technology reporter Asher Moses: "CES keynote live stream means journos can get coked up in their hotel room instead of putting pants on. "Hey, I never said it was *me* getting coked up in a hotel room. You think I can afford cocaine on a Fairfax salary?" These quotes emanated from a fake Asher Moses Twitter account and were not made by the real Asher Moses. Crikey regrets the error. The Matthew Johns affair: Katherine Stuart writes: Re. "Code of silence: the murky mix of stars, s-x and sports writers" (Friday, item 1). Get real Charlie Happell! Rugby league is brutal and gladiatorial, he implies, because that’s what it apparently still takes to survive in "the working man’s culture" in Australia. Although I was appalled to hear the New Zealander’s story and witness the retelling of the devastation it had caused in her young life, what’s truly appalling is the acceptability and apparent excuseability of such behaviour in the wider community at any level. As evidenced by Happell’s dichotomising that:
...the players who make it to the elite level are very tough, macho, unreconstructed blokes. That’s not to say they’re all blockheads, because they’re not, but neither do many of them get manicures, have their poodles shampooed or their kaftans dry-cleaned. Nor do they have a hissy-fit when they can’t find their blow-dryer.

There’s an implicit admiration here for the "tough, macho, unreconstructed bloke", not to mention homophobia…It’s a great pity that team sport in this country, with all its health benefits to our increasingly obese population, and the social benefits of learning how to work together in a team, gets reduced at the elite level to this kind of ridiculous dichotomising.

Where do the men you’d like to see as the responsible fathers of the next generation fit into this picture? No wonder younger people are turning away from getting involved. It doesn’t have to be like that either. But that would take getting real about what is and having the will to change it.

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3 comments

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3 thoughts on “Discussing the Matthew Johns affair

  1. Bill Malkin

    > A Hobart teacher writes: Re. “Tips and rumours” (Friday, item 6). When reading Tips and Rumours, the paragraph on NAPLAN testing caught my attention.

    Me too! But only because I read it wrong.

  2. Bill Malkin

    > For those non-boomers or non-fans of Van Morrison (i.e. deeply uncool people),

    Hey, I’m a baby boomer and am legally and profoundly cool. I just find it very difficult to be a fan of someone who treats others so badly.

  3. Dermot McGuire

    But guy you write welland are often serious under the lightheartedness. La crabbe is shite under the light hearted stuff.

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