Outside 'play' reflects the game

April 8, 2009

AFTER the father of an AFL player is assaulted [1] [2] [3], we need an "emergency summit" (The Age, 7/4) to appease the public. The fact that the AFL builds its popularity on an atmosphere of gladiatorial violence needs to be obscured once more.

No politician and few citizens dare to mention the fact that the culture of the game has become a "toxic asset". Drug abuse, violence and loyalty for sale to the highest bidder are the principles displayed off-field. Violence, verbal abuse and lack of respect for the spirit of the rules are the principles displayed on the field.

Is it any wonder that immature individuals do not understand that "playing the game" outside the arena may land them in jail?

Stephen Digby

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