Eddie McGuire’s spectacular absence of responsibility is evidence his resignation was past due
Eddie McGuire broke down in tears during a press conference to reveal his resignation as chair of the Collingwood Football Club yesterday afternoon.
The questionable media personality was because of step down after 22 years in the hot-seat (reason the pun) at the end of 2021, but following a damning report into the club’s culture of racism which was launched recently, and McGuire’s astonishing response to all of it, requires his immediate resignation were speedy and emphatic.
A quick recap for anybody holding any confusion over the entire sorry legend: Eddie McGuire announced the report indicated “a day of pride”. Yep, that’s right. Systemic bigotry= a happy day in Eddie McGuire’s book.
” What’s happened on my watch is we have actually built a fantastic club, we have actually commissioned this report, we have actually developed all sorts of mechanisms for getting included in the neighborhood … of which we are really proud,” he said.
” It was not systemic racism, as such, we simply didn’t have the processes to handle it that we do now.”
No, Eddie. It was, most definitely, systemic bigotry.
The report explained Collingwood’s history with racism as “distinct and outright”, and demanded that stakeholders do something about it to change the club’s culture. However no such action was gone over at the press conference in which McGuire explained the report’s release as a “very proud” day.
The AFL president, Gillon McLachlan suggested slightly that he would “have utilized a different word” from “proud”, but then affirmed McGuire as the best person to make changes. Victoria’s Premier Dan Andrews agreed the Collingwood chair should remain put.
The general public didn’t concur.
And while McGuire ultimately retracted his horrifying comments, it’s clear from his reaction yesterday that he harbours no true regret nor the capability to show.
” I attempted my finest and I do not always get it right, however I don’t stop attempting,” he said. “Today, reliable instantly, I step down from the presidency of the Collingwood Football Club.
Explaining himself as a “lightning arrester for vitriol”, he claimed reaction against him had actually been unjust.
” From the moment I ended up being the president of the Collingwood Football Club on my 34th birthday back in 1998, my sole inspiration was to heal, unite, influence and drive a new social conscience, not simply into this club, however sport and the neighborhood in general and construct an organisation that would be a location for chance for all individuals,” he declared.
However it was McGuire’s parting remarks that were deeply telling. Reeling off a variety of programs which obviously highlighted the club’s dedication to social justice and inclusion (tough to fathom provided the content of the report) McGuire stated “this is why I say we are not a racist club. Vice versa.”
And because single sentence lies the essence of why Eddie McGuire’s time was well and genuinely up. After numerous transgressions, Eddie McGuire is always quick to say sorry however never to find out from his mistakes.
From blaming “sturdy pain relievers” on his racist slurs against former Native player Adam Goodes to recommending his death risks versus sports reporter Caroline Wilson were simply “banter”, McGuire will apologise but it’s never unconditional. His apologies are an effort to quell the reaction but never ever an attempt to quell his own conscience.
His response to this scandal- and the news that numerous non-White Collingwood players have experienced psychological and emotional torment for years- is outrageous. He could have done so far more in the position he remained in. He might have laid a stake in the ground and showed real leadership through accountability.
Rather he reverted to the Eddie of old: A hollow apology, some crocodile tears and a great deal of inaction.