Let’s start by stating the obvious: Eddie McGuire’s attempted humour regarding Caroline Wilson during Big Freeze at the G was in bad taste.
Wilson has come out today and said she didn’t find the funny side of the comments.
“I didn’t like the language and I think it is such a pity that they need to default to that sort of really vicious language and I do not accept that it was playful banter I’ve got to say,” she said on 3AW.
“It doesn’t say much for the Triple M audience that this only came out sort of over the weekend because someone picked it up in Sydney. The people listening at the time thought it was OK.”
She also wrote a column about it, which you can read here.
McGuire himself also apologised for the call this morning, saying, “I do apologise for language that could be taken in any way, shape or form to promulgate any sort of act of violence to anybody far less a woman.”
But while everyone focuses on McGuire, comments made in the presence of Wilson on Queen’s Birthday Monday have come to light.
In her regularly scheduled appearance with 3AW, Dwayne Russell and Tony Shaw spoke to Wilson about the prospect of her taking part in the festivities next year.
The chat went as follows.
Dwayne Russell: “We’d have to sell tickets for those who want to push you, Caro, I reckon.”
Caroline Wilson: “That’s very funny Dwayne. Hysterical.”
Tony Shaw: “And hold her under Dwayne.”
Caroline Wilson: “Oh, boys.”
To put that into context, that is Collingwood legend Tony Shaw making the exact same joke Eddie has been chastised for, with Wilson present.
And this is what annoys me, there is an incredible amount of hypocrisy when it comes to this issue.
McGuire’s comments were first published online the day after, receiving minimal response at best.
The fact that this story only truly came to light six days after the comments aired shows that it was seen, and subsequently ignored by many mainstream media outlets.
These comments, made on two major Melbourne radio stations, by two of the biggest names in AFL commentary.
Will Shaw receive the same throttling as Eddie? Probably not. Not because his comments weren’t just as horrific, but not many people outside of Victoria know of Shaw, so what’s the point?
Domestic abuse is a blight on our society and something we must all work together to fix. Some are using these comments as a stepping stone to push an uncomfortable truth into the public spotlight, and I commend them for that.
But some in the media are using an issue that affects thousands as an excuse to feed into the public’s insatiable appetite to see a well-known media figure get knocked around.
Triple M and Eddie are institutions in Melbourne, and I guarantee that comment was heard by every newsroom in the country. Did any of them do anything at the time? No.
They sat back until the comments were beginning to make the rounds on social media, then gleefully stuck the boot into McGuire.
If you want to impress me, make a stand at the time. Don’t come marching in well after the fact pretending you are a moral crusader.