Some Australians still have no clue what is considered racist. This Mad Monday "costume" is clearly racist. And I'm a person who is fed up with today's over-the-top political correctness. pic.twitter.com/oWPR0WjeUx— Francis Gonzalez (@fgonzalez_) September 19, 2018
Over a week after an Australian newspaper came under fire for its racist cartoon depicting legendary tennis player Serena Williams stomping on her racquet with a pacifier lying close by, three Australian football players are making headlines for donning black to impersonate the tennis star and her sister Venus Williams along with Kenyan-born Australian Rules Football (AFL) player Aliir Aliir.
The picture of the racist athletes, who reportedly belong to Tasmania-based Penguin Football Club, was taken during the end-of-season celebrations, commonly known as “Mad Monday.”
It was then uploaded on social media, where it immediately went viral, with online users slamming the players for racism.
Oh look: a mere week after that racist cartoon of Serena Williams, another blackface scandal hits the Australian press bc white dudes decided to "dress up" like her. Meanwhile, three Aboriginal people died in custody in the same time period. What a nation of racist slow learners.— Celeste Liddle (@Utopiana) September 19, 2018
guys... I'm afraid we have to set the "days without a blackface incident in Australia" board back to zero, again— Giovanni Torre (@GiovanniTorre) September 19, 2018
Australia: Another day, another blackface incident— ainsindahouse (@ainsindahouse) September 19, 2018
Williams became the center of a controversy after she was penalized by chair umpire Carlos Ramos for code violations in the U.S. Open 2018 women’s final against Japan’s Naomi Osaka. Following the on-court argument, the editorial cartoonist for the Herald Sun in Melbourne, Mark Knight, drew an offensive caricature of the player which was so far off that if one removed the tennis court from the equation, it would be have been hard to tell who the cartoon represented. It showed a typical racist “angry Black woman” trope – and people were obviously not happy.
Now, with yet another racist attack on Williams in Australia, the world is reminded that racism is still well and alive in the region, particularly among the athletes.
Following the uproar against the blackface photo, the Penguin Football Club released a statement to HuffPost, claiming it was not aware of the players’ action and their behavior was “unacceptable in this day and age.” It said the athletes in the offensive photo had been reprimanded.
The players have also reportedly apologized.
Tasmania’s Australian rules governing also slammed the players and said the organization “vehemently disapprove of it.”
“We will be working with the league and club to get more information and to see how we can assist in providing education for the players,” a spokesperson said in a statement to The Sydney Morning Herald.
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