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View Poll Results: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the Austra

Yes – bigotry is simply unacceptable 37 41.57%
No – Court has the freedom of expression 52 58.43%
Voters: 89. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-22-2011, 09:38 AM   #166
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Mr.Michael View Post
Wonder why Court is so serious about this? Of course there is her religious beliefs and all that but perhaps she experienced the tennis scene in the 60's as very disturbing to her? There were loads and loads of lesbians during that time in the locker rooms and around the tournaments. Propably saw some harassment going on? Maybe she found it very distressing and odd and that has affected her later in life?
I'd be inclined to say that homophobia is actually very rarely a result of being harassed by homosexuals, most homophobes don't know/aren't friends with any gay people.
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Old 12-22-2011, 01:05 PM   #167
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Topspindoctor View Post
If they are so weak they they commit sucides because of comments someone made, they probably don't deserve to be here anyway. This planet has over 7 billion people already. I doubt they'll be missed.



She has a right to express her opinion, end of story. Thankfully Australia is still democratic and people are still free to speak their mind unlike in communist Europe where you can get jailed for denying holocaust People are free to do what they want, no matter how controversial it is, so wipe the foam from your mouth and accept it.
Stupid trolls are just the worst kind. At least try to be clever in your trolling. Seriously, there should be auto-bans for crap like this.
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Old 12-22-2011, 02:24 PM   #168
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Dougie View Post
So saying "Martina Navrátilová and other lesbian and bisexual players are ruining the sport of tennis and setting a bad example for younger players" is quite okay, but then getting tested for illegal drugs is "an infringment of liberty and privacy"??
Yes.

Court is just expressing an (in this case, absurd) opinion. It has no effect on anybody who is sensible enough to ignore it.
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Old 12-22-2011, 02:30 PM   #169
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Kat_YYZ View Post
With all due respect, Sophocles, this world you are describing exists only in theory - in the pages of philosophy textbooks; this is not reality and never will be.

The reality is people are affected by words and bullying; younger people hear words and see no reaction (because everyone is "not dignifying it with a response" as you'd have people do) and they assume such hateful attitudes are normal and acceptable, and so it continues. Someone yells bigoted insults at another person in the street and everyone pulls up their collar and quickens their step and pretends not to notice so they don't have to do anything about it.

Then it goes from words to little gestures and acts of omission: a couple is ignored in a restaurant for 40 minutes while the staff serve people who arrived much later than them -- "oh, it was an oversight, we're just busy..."even though the waitstaff are sneering and snickering openly. There are lots of such ways you can discriminate against people without doing anything overt that they can prove, and then just insist that the other party is paranoid. And then you pair that with people being allowed to say whatever they want and you wonder why young people feel bullied and like they have no options, and take their own lives.

Margaret Court has the right to voice her opinion but she does not have 'the right to be honoured.' That's not a right. Is it bullying to "out" people with prejudiced hateful views and subject them to societal scorn?? Yes, it is, but so what? Turnabout is fair play. Think of all the centuries that blacks, Jews (look up the origin of the term "ghetto" sometime), gays, even women, could be openly scorned with no right of redress. So now it's the bigots' turn to be bullied. It'd be nice if we as a species could give up bullying altogether, but looking at thousands of years of human history, this doesn't seem likely.
This is a good post but largely based on a false premiss. Court was not, as far as I am aware, approaching lesbian players and shouting, "Fuck off you dyke!" That sort of thing is not done and we'd be right to condemn her for it (although I still wouldn't rename the court, just as I wouldn't, for example, rename Martin Luther King Day in the light of revelations about his serial adultery). She was expressing an adverse opinion on homosexuality and personally I a) couldn't give a shit & b) do not believe she should be bullied for it.
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Old 12-22-2011, 02:50 PM   #170
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Verd View Post
When there is systematic discrimination against homophobes in the workplace and in marriage law and in religious institutions, and when homophobes are beaten up in the street outside of bars for whom they love, by all means, go ahead and talk about "persecution." For you to equate the oppressive conditions homosexuals and other sexual minorities face in even the most "enlightened" countries on Earth to "persecution" and "tyranny of the majority" is absolutely hilarious and shows how clearly ignorant most people are of who is actually affected by the "tyranny of the majority" in situations like these.

Truly amazing how those who pay lip service to libertarian, free-thinking ideals of freedom of thought and expression decide that this ideology somehow doesn't also apply to the prerogative of private citizens and private organizations to decide what sorts of speech they want to support or oppose. Free societies "punish" people all the time for certain forms of speech, which is what teachers do when they put their student in detention for using racist slurs against their classmates. It would not be in any way a suppression of Court's speech for her name to be removed from a stadium, unless anyone here is willing to explain to us all how the removal of her name from an arena somehow stops her from speaking out to the press or from her pulpit. And it would not be "persecution" for ATP or Tennis Australia to come out against her statements in a meaningful way.

Lastly, the idea that this is just a political affair and that private views and statements have nothing to do with her tennis achievements is rubbish. First of all, her statements are not at all being made in her capacity as a private citizen but as an extremely public figure, and when players like Federer and Nadal are feted in trophy ceremonies and exhos and events, do the announcers praise them for their tennis achievements alone? No, people talk about their personalities, their giving nature, their sportmanship on the court, and their work off the court as ambassadors for the sport.

All these factors that attest to a person's private character do end up playing a part when honoring top athletes in the game, and suddenly because we're afraid of "persecuting" an active campaigner against equal rights who spews hateful statements that have been soundly rejected by the scientific, medical, and psychiatric communities decades ago we have to decide all of a sudden that an athlete's character and off-court statements are off-limits for discussion? Do people talk about BJK's achievements on the tennis courts alone when discussing her legacy to tennis? Do they only discuss results on court with Ashe or Althea Gibson and ignore their role in breaking barriers? Give me a break.

As I said in my last post, it's clear that there is no will for anything even remotely/symbolically punitive to happen to Court, as the posts in this thread and the reaction to this news elsewhere shows that most people are more eager to get upset over the censuring of a bigot than over the actual damage a bigot causes with her hate speech. Which is why it's even more laughable that some people dare to cry "tyranny of the majority" in Court's defense.
You're missing the point. You seem to be arguing - & if you're not, what are you arguing? - that autonomous institutions are morally obliged to "discriminate" against "homophobes" (the latter, by the way, is a barbarism - try and think of a better word). If you had your way, "homophobes" would be in the same position as homosexuals used to be. Of course institutions should be free to decide how to respond to what their members say, but in most cases institutions don't give a shit about politics, & there's no reason they should be made to; it would compromise their autonomy & distract them from their purposes, which in the case of Tennis Australia is holding a tennis tournament. This is an extremely important point. There have been plenty of societies in history in which every darts & knitting club has been obliged to promote a particular political point of view, & they are generally described by the word "totalitarian". A society with a moral atmosphere in which institutions merely feel obliged to promote a particular political viewpoint is less bad than a fully totalitarian one, in the way the (social & moral) tyranny of the majority is less bad than tyranny, but it's hardly something to aspire to.

An athlete's personal qualities no doubt play some part in our decision to honour them, but only insofar as they pertain to their performance on the field, & their political views simply don't. We're not likely to get a Ben Johnson arena any time soon, but there's nothing wrong with a Margaret Court Arena. There's nothing morally wrong about arguing against gay marriage & doing so has zero effect on tennis. As I say, I'd be more than happy for Court's pronouncements to be ignored - it's not obvious why an athlete should have anything interesting to say about politics, any more than a politician about sport - & I think you & your fellow "homophobe"-bashers would be a lot happier if you ignored her too.
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Old 12-22-2011, 02:51 PM   #171
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by rhinooooo View Post
Yeah, change the name. No reason why players, coaches, fans especially those who are LGBT should have to be associated with this horseshit.

The people arguing that this is anti free-speech or that it shouldn't be political. That argument in itself is political. Either way, what do you care? It doesn't bother you. So let the people who are pissed off have the 'right' to complain and change things, in the same way that Margaret Court had a platform as a public figure to express her views, according to her 'right', right?

Tennis is not bigger than politics or bigotry. Never will be.
Tennis is much more important to me - & to most tennis fans - than "gay rights". That's why I care.
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Old 12-22-2011, 03:24 PM   #172
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Arakasi View Post
To all the people saying "the court was named after her for her achievements in tennis so they shouldn't change it" would you still use this logic if it turned out she was a pedophile/serial killer/everything terrible under the sun?

You can argue they shouldn't change the name of the court but the "only tennis achievements matter" logic doesn't really stand up. When you name a court after someone their actions and behaviour outside of tennis do matter. So then the question becomes, does her view on homosexuality sufficiently tarnish her character to warrant removing her name?

In my opinion, not yet. However, if she continues being vocal in her outdated views then Tennis Australia should do everything they can do disasscoiate themselves from her or else they run the risk of being seen to tacitly approve of her behaviour.
Expressing any political opinion, however twisted - & Court's falls far short of the worst - is in a different moral category from murder.
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Old 12-22-2011, 03:27 PM   #173
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Sunset of Age View Post
There has been plenty activism from the gay movement in the past 50 years or so to even make older people open their minds. It's the stubborn and stupid of any age to not do so.
For heaven's sake Karin, homosexuality was abominated by the vast majority of people for centuries. Basically between the fall of the Western Roman Empire & the 1960s. You don't seriously believe 50 years of lame gay activism is going to overturn centuries of cultural conditioning do you? Most old people have views that a lot of the more intolerant "liberals" on this forum would want them tarred & feathered for - and most of those old people are decent people who happen to have different views.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:22 PM   #174
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Sophocles View Post
You're missing the point. You seem to be arguing - & if you're not, what are you arguing? - that autonomous institutions are morally obliged to "discriminate" against "homophobes" (the latter, by the way, is a barbarism - try and think of a better word). If you had your way, "homophobes" would be in the same position as homosexuals used to be. Of course institutions should be free to decide how to respond to what their members say, but in most cases institutions don't give a shit about politics, & there's no reason they should be made to; it would compromise their autonomy & distract them from their purposes, which in the case of Tennis Australia is holding a tennis tournament. This is an extremely important point. There have been plenty of societies in history in which every darts & knitting club has been obliged to promote a particular political point of view, & they are generally described by the word "totalitarian". A society with a moral atmosphere in which institutions merely feel obliged to promote a particular political viewpoint is less bad than a fully totalitarian one, in the way the (social & moral) tyranny of the majority is less bad than tyranny, but it's hardly something to aspire to.

An athlete's personal qualities no doubt play some part in our decision to honour them, but only insofar as they pertain to their performance on the field, & their political views simply don't. We're not likely to get a Ben Johnson arena any time soon, but there's nothing wrong with a Margaret Court Arena. There's nothing morally wrong about arguing against gay marriage & doing so has zero effect on tennis. As I say, I'd be more than happy for Court's pronouncements to be ignored - it's not obvious why an athlete should have anything interesting to say about politics, any more than a politician about sport - & I think you & your fellow "homophobe"-bashers would be a lot happier if you ignored her too.
The word "homophobe"-basher is as good as say... racist-"basher".
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:23 PM   #175
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Sophocles View Post
Tennis is much more important to me - & to most tennis fans - than "gay rights". That's why I care.
You've got your priorities all wrong then... I hope most tennis fans don't.
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:14 PM   #176
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Sophocles View Post
For heaven's sake Karin, homosexuality was abominated by the vast majority of people for centuries. Basically between the fall of the Western Roman Empire & the 1960s. You don't seriously believe 50 years of lame gay activism is going to overturn centuries of cultural conditioning do you? Most old people have views that a lot of the more intolerant "liberals" on this forum would want them tarred & feathered for - and most of those old people are decent people who happen to have different views.
You could easily substitute gays for Asians, blacks, Jews, Muslims, etc., and the idea would be exactly the same. Just admit you find gay people disgusting and you enjoy insulting them. There are old Americans who are still alive who "abominate" black people, and you don't just say, "Oh sorry, those old people are decent people who just happen to have different views. You can't expect the lame activism of Martin Luther King, Jr. et al to overturn their culture."

Some Europeans in my grandparents generation, who are still alive, supported the Holocaust and hated Jews. Do you just excuse them as decent people because anti-Semitism was culturally acceptable in Europe for hundred and hundreds of years?
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:35 PM   #177
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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You could easily substitute gays for Asians, blacks, Jews, Muslims, etc., and the idea would be exactly the same. Just admit you find gay people disgusting and you enjoy insulting them. There are old Americans who are still alive who "abominate" black people, and you don't just say, "Oh sorry, those old people are decent people who just happen to have different views. You can't expect the lame activism of Martin Luther King, Jr. et al to overturn their culture."

Some Europeans in my grandparents generation, who are still alive, supported the Holocaust and hated Jews. Do you just excuse them as decent people because anti-Semitism was culturally acceptable in Europe for hundred and hundreds of years?
I don't think that's what's going on here - I think that in a some cases it's quite simply, as a western white male, to really understand or empathise with being discriminated against or treated a second class citizen, and many people unfortunately do not even attempt it. Minds closed in unimaginative complacency.
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:48 PM   #178
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by LoveFifteen View Post
You could easily substitute gays for Asians, blacks, Jews, Muslims, etc., and the idea would be exactly the same. Just admit you find gay people disgusting and you enjoy insulting them. There are old Americans who are still alive who "abominate" black people, and you don't just say, "Oh sorry, those old people are decent people who just happen to have different views. You can't expect the lame activism of Martin Luther King, Jr. et al to overturn their culture."

Some Europeans in my grandparents generation, who are still alive, supported the Holocaust and hated Jews. Do you just excuse them as decent people because anti-Semitism was culturally acceptable in Europe for hundred and hundreds of years?
Actually, yes, it is standard for old people to be "racist" in modern liberal terms, and most of those old people are indeed perfectly decent people. It is a ludicrous over-correction to go from the mistreatment of the past to the idea that anybody who is "racist" is evil, & I suspect it has happened just because the last century afforded us - in the Holocaust - a world-shatteringly horrific instance of mass murder with a racist justification. The vast majority of elderly people, although racist, are against mass murder, so it is absurd to treat them with the same opprobrium you would give a Nazi. Real Nazis are obviously a different case.

I don't, as it happens, have anything against homosexuals: not merely some, but arguably most of my best friends are gay (I'm saying this without irony because it's true). But I do find homosexual activism, along with all other kinds of p.c. liberal-bigot activism, intensely irritating.
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Old 12-22-2011, 06:07 PM   #179
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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I don't think that's what's going on here - I think that in a some cases it's quite simply, as a western white male, to really understand or empathise with being discriminated against or treated a second class citizen, and many people unfortunately do not even attempt it. Minds closed in unimaginative complacency.
Possibly.

But I suspect I simply haven't made myself clear.

If we were talking about renaming the Margaret Court Dance-floor at G.A.Y. Night Club I should be the first to agree that renaming was a good idea. If we were talking about renaming the Margaret Court Chamber of the Australian Parliament I'd have no strong objection, beyond wondering why on earth it was named after a tennis player in the first place. But as we're talking about renaming one of the biggest tennis arenas in Australia, which is named after one of Australia's greatest tennis players, I find the argument for renaming it disturbing, for the following reasons.

1. The renamers are taking it for granted that Court is wrong.

Do I have to explain that this isn't really the way political debate works in a free society?

2. The renamers are taking it for granted that being wrong on this particular issue is morally wicked.

Guys, this is what the religious people are supposed to do. You know, the people you are against? Just because somebody has political views you find repugnant, does not make them morally inferior to you. Debate starts from neutral, not from, "I'm right & anybody who disagrees is evil."

3. The renamers are taking it for granted that institutions that have nothing to do with politics have a duty to promote, or at any rate express solidarity with, (the renamers' particular) political views.

This is totalitarian in tendency. Contrary to what some people seem to believe, politics is a small & mostly unimportant part of life, having far less effect than politicians imagine & occupying only a tiny part of most people's consciousnesses - and this is how it should be. One of the most noticeable features of a tyranny is how much politics impinges on people's lives & thoughts. You can't organise a sodding whist drive without checking with the local party secretary that the right "messages" are being conveyed. I don't want autonomous institutions put under pressure to make political statements or gestures, nor do I want them making such gestures. It is inimical to their instrinsic purposes (if those purposes are not political) & there is no need. If you want to know what to think about Margaret Court's comments, reading this thread would be far more help than going to a renamed arena. The arena's role is in tennis and Court's achievements are in tennis.

4. The renamers have completely missed the best reason for renaming it the "Ken Rosewall arena".

Court played on the WTA.
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Old 12-22-2011, 06:39 PM   #180
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Default Re: Should Tennis Australia change the name of the Margaret Court show court @ the AO

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Originally Posted by Sophocles View Post
Actually, yes, it is standard for old people to be "racist" in modern liberal terms, and most of those old people are indeed perfectly decent people. It is a ludicrous over-correction to go from the mistreatment of the past to the idea that anybody who is "racist" is evil, & I suspect it has happened just because the last century afforded us - in the Holocaust - a world-shatteringly horrific instance of mass murder with a racist justification. The vast majority of elderly people, although racist, are against mass murder, so it is absurd to treat them with the same opprobrium you would give a Nazi. Real Nazis are obviously a different case.

I don't, as it happens, have anything against homosexuals: not merely some, but arguably most of my best friends are gay (I'm saying this without irony because it's true). But I do find homosexual activism, along with all other kinds of p.c. liberal-bigot activism, intensely irritating.
So, you find minorities of all kinds, whether black, Jewish, Muslim, or gay, to be intensely irritating when they fight for equality? I suppose you're the kind of person who would have found the slaves irritating when they pressed for freedom?
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