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Margaret Court: A Living Monument to a Darker Past

Redcuchulain presents an alternative view of Margaret Court’s recent commentary. That is her comments belong to a dark past we no longer accept.

When I first heard all the furore about Margaret Court last week I really couldn’t see what all the fuss was about. So she doesn’t want to use Qantas because she disagrees with their stance on an issue. “Fair enough, I thought. I won’t be shopping in any businesses on Sundays anymore who reduce penalty rates. She has every right to make choices with her money.”

Since then, social conservatives have been touting Margaret as a brave champion of traditional values. If that’s the best role model they have then God help them.

Margaret has a history of bigotry on a number of issues. In 2013 she made personal attacks in a newspaper letter against fellow tennis player Casey Dellacqua regarding her family and her sexuality.

This week she has compared homosexuals to Hitler and communists and said transgender children ‘had the devil in them’.

Controversy is not new to Margaret Court. It has emerged that in 1970 she wrote to a New Zealand newspaper defending apartheid saying,“if you ask me, South Africa has the racial situation rather better organised than anyone else, certainly much better than the United States.” This was in the context of some other sports people boycotting South Africa.

Is there a positive message in this?

Rather than get upset about Margaret’s comments I think we should see the positive in what her position being brought out in the public arena brings. In 1970 some people misused the literal translation of scripture, mostly from the old testament, to continue to justify apartheid. They interpreted words without taking into account the social, cultural, economic or political environment of biblical times to justify not changing their position. To be challenging the apartheid view in some parts of South Africa was interpreted as heresy.

Rather than anyone getting offended about Margaret’s comments, we should thank her for reminding us how far we have come. Her views on homosexuality would not have caused any outrage in 1970 either and would have been much closer to the community norm. It is unthinkable that anyone would now misuse scripture to justify racial bigotry.

In another 40 years, it will be unthinkable that people will misuse scripture to treat people differently on sexuality grounds. Margaret is a living monument to a darker past. She reminds us of how far we have come and that there is still more work to be done. We should be thankful. God is working through her, just probably not in the way that she understands.

46 comments

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  1. townsvilleblog

    This brainwashed old bird can’t see the forest for the trees, it must be hard at her age to open her mind to enlightened thinking, especially while she is so involved with that un-authored book she reads, full of superstition and nonsense. Those of us who can think for ourselves understand that all people should be born equal and all should have basic human rights.

  2. Terry2

    Margaret Court has effectively grounded herself.

    She won’t fly Qantas or Jetstar as Chief Executive Alan Joyce supports marriage equality. That rules out Virgin as Richard Branson also supports gay rights and Branson owns a slab of Tiger Air.

    Perhaps she’ll get a lift with Pauline Hanson with James Ashby as pilot.

  3. Florence nee Fedup

    Actually added would if nothing else available.

  4. paulwalter

    Court is as bad at thinking as she was good at tennis.

  5. paulwalter

    Time for “Evonne Goolagong Arena”.

  6. John Kelly

    “Margaret is a living monument to a darker past.” What a brilliant description. I wish I had thought of that…..ooops, I did actually, but not in those words. Margaret is symbolic of the dark days of pre WW2 when Jews were the target. It’s all happening again.

  7. darrel nay

    Maybe we should call it sodomy arena in the name of tolerance.

    If the government claims it has the right to legalise gay-marriage then it follows that the government has the right to abolish gay marriage and similarly it follows that the government would have the right to abolish heterosexual marriage. Logic shows that this whole thing is just another power grab by a government with a long history of power grabs and over reach beyond its charter.

    I support gay people but I don’t believe gay-marriage is a good idea.

    Cheers

  8. longwhitekid

    No matter what people say, the fact remains that Margaret Court is just an attention-seeking arsehole.

  9. wam

    She is the voice of those who elect the slimey X and represents the beliefs of the rabbott and, perhaps, the majority of politicians? Like climate change ‘gay’ is languishing and, for many, has already missed the boat.
    She demonstrates how hungry the media is for anything to use ‘incitful’ wish little billy would just stir the pot with a titbit once a week.

  10. Matters Not

    Don’t support Ms Court and her views but I wouldn’t change the name of the ‘court’. More importantly, I don’t support Trump’s decision to renege on the USA Paris commitment. I will now choose not to buy things made in America, including goods produced by US companies. From now on it will be:

    USA – NO WAY !

    (I am supremely confident I will send them all to the wall.)

  11. Jagger

    Darrel, “I support gay people BUT” you don’t really mean it.

  12. helvityni

    Margaret, who?

    So far I have travelled in South America, but have successfully avoided US of America, no plans to start now…

    I wonder if the Liberal backbencher Craig Kelly(?) has started celebrating Trump’s decision not to honour Paris Climate agreement; his Champagne must cold enough by now..

  13. Jagger

    Margaret Court was arguably the greatest ever female tennis player in the world, I can’t imagine why she is being so negative about the sport she loved and championed.

  14. Freethinker

    It is incredible how religion can brainwashed those with weak mind.
    By the way, her attitude have nothing to do with Christianity, she just make the rules to suit her ideology.

  15. helvityni

    “Margaret Court: A Living Monument to a Darker Past”

    More reason for all of us, and especially for our Governments, to work towards a better, more enlightened and inclusive future.

    What about starting now, today…There’s so much to be achieved: SS marriage, becoming a Republic, fairer taxation and education systems, more humane treatment of Indigenous people and asylum seekers, low cost housing for the homeless, for our younger generations.. and start believing that CC is real….and then some more….

  16. Wayne Turner

    In a strange way I find her very amusing.I can’t take her seriously at all.She has zero self awareness,like Abbott.

    She comes across as such a raving selfish and annoying bigot.That she doesn’t realise,that she’s a great advertisement to legalise “same sex marriage”,from why would anyone want to share the same view of a loud mouth selfish bigot that doesn’t know when to shut up,and tell others how to live.

    Just to hear her reaction if/when same sex marriage becomes legal in Australia,will be priceless amusement.(It will be ashame if she’s dead by then lol )

  17. lawrencesroberts

    & all these years i had though she was Gay!

  18. helvityni

    I don’t know anything about Margaret, but very often people who have had a very tough and possibly religious upbringing are very anti gay, and not surprisingly often gays themselves, but do not dare to come out…

  19. will

    The Poor dear claims to have healing hands a gift from God! Delusional ?

  20. kerri

    Margaret is just using the bible as an excuse to bully Alan Joyce. I am no fan of Joyce as a business man but what he does in the privacy of his bedroom is none of my, or Margaret Courts business. Margaret is slamming QANTAS because Joyce is gay. Guilt by association. Perhaps Margaret should have been forbidden to marry in the Catholic church? I men she was a champion in a sport “full of lesbians”. Guilt by association. Silly irrelevant old woman bleating on about her invisible friend and railing about his equally invisible nemesis. Jesus hung out with a bunch of blokes and his only female companion was a purveyor of “lust of the flesh”!

  21. paulwalter

    Helvi, she was a grand slam winning champion tennis player in the nineteen sixties. Her major rival was Billy Jean King, a feisty player with a similar dominant record.

    Somewhere along the line she married into the Court family, Sir Charles Court was an LNP premier for many years.

    Court “got” religion and complained mightily about how many lesbians were on the professional tennis tour amongst other things. So it has been going on for forty years now.

  22. Matters Not

    Margaret Court nee Smith was probably the best female tennis player of all time. (Not that she would win too many points in today’s game.) She won Grand Slams in singles, doubles and mixed doubles – 62 combined Grand Slam titles, Many of her ‘records’ are yet to be broken. Remarkably, she was a natural ‘left hander’ but was taught to play tennis as a ‘right hander’ because of beliefs of that time

    For a time, she played mixed doubles with Ken Fletcher (also a great player when he became serious – but that wasn’t too often – he liked life too much – girls, parties, and the like) who was in many ways the very opposite to what Court always stood for. She attempted to ‘cure’ him when he developed cancer – but to no avail.

    It’s a great pity that her reputation will be tarnished in this way. But you make your choices.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ken_Fletcher

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Court

  23. Matt

    Well leaving Margaret’s viewsaside, I do think there is a problem when corporations start to get involved in social issues (eg Qantas). These issues are for people to nut out, and given the influence of corporate power on other other aspects of our life, can they please keep out of social issue debates, which they no doubt adopt stances in as a social form of ‘green washing’. Corporate advertising power is not something we want influencing our democracy, as we found out when the mining companies campaigned against Rudd and his very sensible mining tax proposal, we certainly don’t need them extending their influence into other aspects of our lives as well.

    Matt

  24. Heather Cameron

    I find Margaret Court disturbing and an affront to human decency. Here we have a Christian fundamentalist coming out with archaic comments. It is no different to Islamic fundamentalism with similar comments on sharia law etc. I agree totally with Cate McGregor.

    I believe us humans have a big problem with fundamentalism. We don’t know how to deal with it. What causes such fundamentalism? Someone suggested fears and passions. I am open to input on this

  25. Diane

    Galls me when religious people say “it says so in the bible so it must be right” – there are so many things in the bible that are totally outdated, irrelevant and wrong. I’m not religious and I think the last time I read anything in a bible was at a Christmas Carol service when I was bored, but I seem to remember things about stoning adulterers etc being in there, so is she saying we should start doing that too? Batty irrelevant old attention-seeking has-been (and coming from the UK, I can’t remember ever hearing about her before now so can’t have been that great even at her peak!)

  26. Wayne Turner

    Timothy 2:12: “I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man;[a] she must be quiet.”

    Sorry Marge,by your own standard,we must go by the above,because it’s “in the bible”.

    So Marge you have no authority to tell gay men they can’t get married,and in fact you must be quiet,ha,ha,ha,ha…

    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20Timothy+2%3A12

  27. jimhaz

    I would not complain if the tennis court was renamed. it is what should happen, and happen quickly.

    The only sexual issue I see in sport is transgender folks competing in womens events – I do not agree with this – they need to compete in the harder group if their body is primarily masculine.

  28. jimhaz

    [lawrencesrobertsJune 2, 2017 at 10:02 am
    & all these years i had though she was Gay!]

    I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a gay person with a face as sour and pruned up as she has – even amongst the butch biker types. She is anally retentive – pity she is not verbally so.

    Lets renaem the court annus horribilis.

  29. Matters Not

    coming from the UK, I can’t remember ever hearing about her before now so can’t have been that great even at her peak!)

    Not surprised. The best UK player in that era was Virginia Wade. In head to head results M.Court beat V.Wade 3-0, including that thrashing she handed out in the 1969 U.S. Open.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eoQAOMae0s

  30. helvityni

    paul Walter, I’m not interested in sports, but of course I have learnt the last few days that she’s an old tennis-player, has something to do with church,also she’s a Liberal and has some most un-Christian views of other sports people…

    In other words there’s plenty of reasons for me not to want to know her better….. 🙂

  31. diannaart

    In other words there’s plenty of reasons for me not to want to know her better…..

    Indeed.

    As a born in Australia type, I have heard for (far too) many years what a fantastic sportsperson, Margaret Court was, I have also had my peace of mind penetrated, periodically by Mrs Court’s bolts of bigotry. I have tried to ignore her. Like, Helvityni I found plenty of reasons to give her very little thought at all.

    Now, she has been given centre stage (court) by our unfailing MSM in search of anything to cause a news sensation. Looks like Court has trumped Corby in the outrage stakes (nothing will ever out-trump Trump).

    Should we change the name of a site because we don’t like the personal characteristics of someone whose prowess was admired? No. A good idea is to give such people as little recognition as possible – they have already had stuff named after them, that is enough. As an example, I enjoy films such as China Town, Rosemary’s Baby and Repulsion without much thought towards whatsisname.

    This comment is my only media response to Court. I am moving on, as has been stated, her sexist bigotry will go the same way as apartheid has (mostly) gone.

  32. paulwalter

    Helvi,

    Like I said above, as bad at thinking as she was good at tennis.

    Diannart, she has been rattling off this hard conservative fundamentalist stuff for forty years.

  33. Sree

    I hope we can agree on a few things.

    Alan Joyce should have stressed that his views on homosexuality are entirely personal. He has no right to implicitly co- opt a corporation i.e. Qantas to either support or oppose homosexuality, and in doing so, he was wrong. However, this does not merit the idiotic pie attack that was visited upon him by a member of the presumably Christian Right.

    Margaret Court is one of the greatest tennis players that has ever lived and an Aussie legend.Indisputable. She is also apparently a fundamentalist Christian who considers homosexuality to be a vile, unforgivable sin in the eyes of her God. That is her right to express that view, whether you agree or not. She is not a criminal or felon who has advocated physical violence against gays, as unfortunately appears to be the case in respect of many adherents of the Islamic faith.

    Margaret Court may even have supported apartheid. If true, that is also her right. She is NOT Rolf Harris who was duly convicted of a crime and a particularly heinous one, and deserves to have icons dedicated to his memory removed. She MAY ( this is open to debate) be a religious and racial bigot, but even if so, that is her inalienable right as long as she has not visited or encouraged physical harm on others, and abided by the law of the land.

    Leave Margaret Court arena alone, Keep our personal judgments out of sport.

    I think everyone on both sides of the divide need to take a serious chill pill.

  34. helvityni

    Diannaart, Polanski’s movies you mention are so good, I don’t even think of the person who made them, they are Art with a capital A, they have a life of their own.

    Paul, just because this woman is/was good at hitting a ball hard, does not make me accept and/or forgive the nastiness she is dishing out on others, in the name of the Christ,she claims to be a believer, a Christian…

  35. kerri

    Could not agree more Helvtiyni!

  36. Michael Taylor

    She is not a criminal or felon who has advocated physical violence against gays, as unfortunately appears to be the case in respect of many adherents of the Islamic faith.

    As unfortunately appears also to be the case in respect of many adherents of the Christian faith.

  37. strobedriver

    Part of the issue is that people of her age and ilk see the world as it should be and not as it is, and have a great degree of difficulty in moving into the age of which they are not intellectually and emotionally part of or capable of even entertaining. This has recently been displayed by the President of the USA in his tantrum against Climate Change, not to mention Lord Monkton and his inability to accept an evidence-based argument – this list unfortunately is many. This is (hopefully ) the last grasps of the fundamental right and their battle against openness, acceptance, a more nuanced and intelligent society, and articulate conversation about how societies should be formed.
    Since people of her ilk have not suffered from exclusion and/or the pain of non-acceptance she obviously feels free to cast her pithy and emotional parochial diatribe to all. Sad but true in my humble opinion.

  38. bobrafto

    Here is another angle https://theconversation.com/note-to-margaret-court-the-bible-isnt-meant-to-be-read-that-literally-78665

    It appears Court had a calling from God to start up her own church or should I say business. From her web page http://victorylifecentre.com.au/

    Why do we receive Tithes and Offerings?

    ‘Bring all the tithes (a tenth) into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house and try Me now in this, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open for you the windows of heaven, and pour out for you such blessings, that there will not be room enough to recieve it.’ Malachi 3:10

    ‘Give and shall be given to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken togehter and running over, will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.’ Luke 6:38

    ‘Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you.’ Deuteronomy 16:17

    And this is part of her mission statement: To be a centre of mercy, love and compassion: a “mercy ship” Providing refuge and shelter to those in need.

    I could be wrong, but I would venture to say that Court deliberately chose to be controversial just like Pauline Hanson for personal gain. Amen.

  39. Johno

    Chuck Margi into the Tardis and send her back to Spain 1500 (spanish inquisition) . Whoops, maybe she can’t go Air Tardis.

  40. Max Gross

    I feel sorry for her. Religious “belief” is a serious mental illness and its victims need all the professional psychiatric help they can get.

  41. Johno

    Max Gross
    There could be a waiting list.

  42. Sree

    Michael Taylor has rightly pointed out that there may be more than a few Christians out there quite able and willing to inflict and espouse physical harm towards gays. I suppose it is a matter of degree. There are ten nations where homosexuals can be put to death. All are Muslim. There are many more nations where homosexuality is illegal. The vast majority are Muslim. We can draw our own conclusions.

  43. Michael Taylor

    It is horrific that they do that, Sree. However, when I read your comment, I was thinking of all the horrific “poofta bashing” that goes on in some countries … Christian countries, supposedly.

  44. Matters Not

    We can draw our own conclusions.

    Is it possible to do otherwise?

  45. bobrafto

    One of the most astute observations made in the wake of Court’s most recent dive-bomb into public debate was by the cricket writer and high profile transgender Australian Cate McGregor, when the latter pointed to Court’s flair for publicity. “The pile-on last week strategically helped her,” McGregor told the ABC’s The Drum, “It gave prominence to her views and it rendered her a victim. You can kick us (the LGBTI community) to death to the applause of the mainstream media and ramp up solicitations for money, as I saw her acolytes doing on Christian radio the other day, and it’s frankly sick-making.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/03/margaret-court-astounding-champion-who-found-god-and-lost-the-respect-of-a-nation

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