Boxer and former rugby league star Anthony Mundine has received a torrent of criticism for coming out punching against gay storylines on television shows, after the bruiser turned to social media last night to launch a tirade against the latest season of indigenous drama Redfern Now for “promoting homosexuality”.
However openly-gay Triple J broadcaster Tom Ballard’s fingers gave the weakened boxer a virtual slap back, tweeting, “Anthony Mundine is right! TV shows should only promote grown men punching each other in the head until they’re unconscious”.
The first episode of the new season, which is a series of vignettes about life for indigenous people in modern-day Australia, centred around a local family, including a gay indigenous man involved in a court battle with his deceased partner’s mother for custody of his daughter following a deadly accident.
“Watching redfern now & they promoting homosexuality! (Like it’s ok in our culture) that ain’t in our culture & our ancestors would have there (sic) head for it! Like my dad told me GOD made ADAM & EVE not Adam & Steve,” Mundine posted on Facebook.
Mundine’s invective comes on the heels of current Newcastle Knights NRL footballer Ryan Stig’s online rant against homosexuality and marriage equality, where Stig railed against “demonic” gay people and compared them to alcoholics.
The 38-year-old sportsman and former Dragons footballer, who converted to Islam over a decade ago, was then involved in a Faceboook debate with indigenous actor, Luke Carroll, who pointed out that Judeo-Christian beliefs in a creator-God and the myth of Adam and Eve were also not part of Aboriginal culture until very recently.
“I got nothing against it [homosexuality] cause I got friends family that are but promoting it to the youth & masses isn’t right… but each to there own,” Mundine replied.
The post has been shared at least 80 times since Thursday night. Since reports of Mundine’s views spread early on Friday, social media users have been quick to swing back.
“@NITVNews so disappointing We don’t empower people by putting them down. In my culture we accept, acknowledge and embrace everyone,” Twitter user Johanna Kerin said.
“I am an Aboriginal and a Lesbian, I must say it’s really sad to see such a comment from an Aboriginal Sporting star who might I add is a narrow minded, uneducated human being,” Facebook user Steph Broome wrote on Mundine’s wall.
“I’ve known Aboriginal activists throughout the ’60s and ’70s and ’80s and ’90s who fought for the cause of Aboriginal people and they are gay,” producer Rachel Perkins told the ABC.
“[Mundine] saying gay people and Aboriginality don’t go together denies all of the identity of those people. It’s insulting to them – it’s inappropriate that he says that.”