“What about male divers…will you ban them?” – Derryn Hinch
I’m rarely speechless, but I did find myself struggling for words in an interview with the ‘Human Headline’ Derryn Hinch on our campaign against lingerie football coming to Australia next month on Melbourne rado 3AW last week.
You can listen to the interview here
Hinch employs an argument relating to male divers and their brief bathers. I pause then say I had hoped for a sensible discussion on the issue. Undeterred, Hinch presses on, at his blustery best. I respond: are male divers pulling each other’s bathers off? Do they have to sign contracts agreeing to accidental nudity? Are we watching them in action because we hope their bathers will fall down around their ankles?
Having dispatched the divers, I’m then faced with Warwick Capper and his footy shorts. I am not making this up. How can I stand up in the face of such compelling, blistering arguments? Warwick Capper wore tight shorts (and a mullet, but that’s not important right now), therefore women playing porn sport is fine. Put your sunglasses on or you will be blinded by the logic.
Trying to get Warwick Capper’s shorts out of my brain, onFriday I see the following twitter stream from journalist Latika Bourke capturing an exchange at Senate Estimates between conservative Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi and Minister for Sport Kate Lundy over this piece she wrote, critical of the LFL.
Wish Senator Bernardi had done some homework beforehand. Er yes, they are running around in their lingerie actually. That’s the whole point. And I understand why he would wish to score points against a political nemesis and to point out what he believes are hypocrisy on other issues, but would he really be “delighted” to attend a game to learn more about it?
We spoke on the phone. While Bernardi said he is on the “same page”, he compared lingerie football to male wrestling. As Jan says when she’s inspecting the dinner in the oven while her bored and half starved guests wait, in an episode from The Office, “not even close”.
What I am realising is that many men who make these arguments think that we look at male sportsmen the way they look at women. Surely we are hoping to get a closer look at the bulge in a sportsman’s shorts/bathers/wrestling attire? Surely the skin shown by a male wrestler has the equivalent effect of women dressed in lingerie with garter and suspender belts? It’s the same male sexual lense focus applied to Stonemen underwear.
We don’t see promotions for True Fantasy Diving. Or True Fantasy Wrestling. That’s how lingerie football is promoted. Women in sex industry wear, getting hot and sweaty with other women on a sports field, catering for male fantasies.
As I’ve argued already, this game sets back the cause of equality in women’s sport.
• Mitchell Mortaza subjects players to verbal abuse
• Players have to pay for their own health insurance but the LFL do everything to stop injured players making a claim on the insurance fund
• Mitchell Mortaza rumoured to fix LFL games, and one coach has quit because of this
• Players have to submit regular pictures of themselves and are put on ‘fat watch’ and suspended from play if they are suspected of gaining weight.
• Mortaza uses ‘fat watch’ to rig games by benching key players
Please sign our petition at Change.org. Tell the sponsors including including the Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Allphones Stadium Sydney, Telecafe, Seven Yahoo, Yahoo Sports Triple M and Fuel TV what you think.
And please, if you can, spare me from any more arguments invoking men in speedos and Warwick Cappa’s shorts. I’d be eternally grateful.