Anzac Day, is in my mind the most important public holiday of the year on the Australian calendar, for a few good reasons.

It does not involve any sort of religion, it does not involve the birthday of a woman from another country with a crown on her head, and it does not involve the massacre of Indigenous Australians (although many did die in the wars). It does however represent the Australian spirit of mateship, bravery, and our willingness to sacrifice for our country.

However, what puzzles and annoys me is the need to use this day to promote sporting codes.

You can call me a wowser, or a spoilsport, or just a plain dickhead… but I believe a hell of a lot of what I see and hear on the idiot box on Anzac Day is straight out disrespectful.

These sportsmen that we see on the news talking about Anzac spirit would have no idea. Then they pay their respects by having a game of cricket or Rugby League….??? Please…

They could start by showing some f#%king respect…. These guys get enough limelight and press coverage, can’t someone else more deserving have it for a day???

Isn’t Anzac Day supposed to be a day of reflection? Not just another day to go to the cricket or footy. These sportsmen should stick to what they do best… cricketers with KFC commercials, and NRL players with getting drunk and assaulting women. Leave the country to reflect on something that real heroes achieved.

Why do they get asked about Anzac Day at any rate? Can’t the press find someone relevant to ask, like a war veteran, maybe someone just back from fighting in Afghanistan, or maybe someone from the military, a war historian perhaps…. but no, clearly Ricky Ponting would know more…..

Here’s a tip lads, when someone sticks a camera in your face and asks you about Anzac Day, just say “It would be inappropriate for me to comment, you should ask somebody who has first hand experience, after all it is their day”. But no… far more important to have your sponsors logo shown on TV again, so you don the T Shirt or cap, and become part of the news of the day.

Also, what is all the crap with the war euphemisms and the footy??? Battle hardened warriors, putting it on the line, risking life and limb, fight to the finish, battlelines are drawn, vicious clash, some of the commercials even have explosions (WTF)…. it just goes on and on and it makes me wanna puke…

To use phrases like these on a day like Anzac Day is an insult to our diggers as far as I’m concerned, it is a bloody disgrace. There is no comparison whatsoever. In fact, gymnastics leads to higher percentages of broken bones and injuries than the NRL, but you don’t hear the all girls under 15 gymnastic team carrying on with all the battle bulls#%t…

I am sorry, but a bunch of blokes getting paid big dollars to throw a ball around a field, does not warrant comparison with jumping out of a trench and into enemy gunfire, any way you look at it.

Nobody calls halftime during a fire fight so the troops on either side can stop for a Gatorade, and a bit of a massage. Nobody blows a full time whistle so you can leave the battlefield and go home after 90 minutes. I have yet to see any footy players dragging their mates dead bodies off the field as bombs and mortars explode around them.

I am not saying that there are not injuries in sport, but only an absolute idiot would try to compare war injuries with footy injuries.

I know many of you will disagree and say you enjoy the games on Anzac Day. All I am asking is, would they be any less enjoyable on the Saturday?

Also, on Anzac Day in particular, if we can stop the stupid war euphemisms, they do nothing but belittle the efforts of our brave soldiers.

Our soldiers risked their lives every day they were away from home, often for years. They faced struggles, hurdles and hardships, both mental and physical, that even in our darkest days we could not begin to imagine. They didn’t do it for money, glory, or a sponsor, they did it for their country. They did it for you and me. And you know what, they still do…

It’s only one day in the year, can’t we show a little respect….?


17 comments on “Respect

  1. Yeah, but Wixxy, everyone makes a lot of money out if it, and isn’t that what it is all about?

    (sarcasm hat firmly on)

    Although, I wonder how much of this money is re-directed at the RSL or such?

    Timely post

  2. 60,000 young Australian men died in WW1 perhaps twice as many were scared for life (and went on to scar their families).
    Oh great and wise Wixxy, can you tell me what good came of the first world war?
    Best we forget

  3. “Dulce et Decorum Est ”

    Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
    Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
    Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
    And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
    Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
    But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
    Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
    Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

    Gas! GAS! Quick, boys! — An ecstasy of fumbling,
    Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
    But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
    And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
    Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
    As under I green sea, I saw him drowning.

    In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
    He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

    If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
    Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
    And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
    His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
    If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
    Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
    Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
    Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues, —
    My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
    To children ardent for some desperate glory,
    The old lie: Dulce et decorum est
    Pro patria mori.

    Literal Translation: It is sweet and right to die for the country.

  4. Ah, yes what good indeed, at least we learnt that war was bad…. until WW2, Vietnam, Korea, 2 Gulf wars, Afghanistan and many more…..
    Not much good at all then I guess…

  5. On JooR’s topic the subject came up about the commercialisation of most events and occasion in Australia, and I said that that so far ANZAC day has escaped this treatment. Correction: I had forgotten about the highly profitable ANZAC Day sporting events.

  6. It is a real shame, as I would have thought that Anzac day should be left alone… On the News coverage, the people I saw asked about Anzac Day were a couple of elderly ladies who worked behind the scenes for the army in food preperation and other things for the troops (fair enough), 2 NRL players from St George, Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, and Glen McGrath… all except the ladies were wearing sponsors logo’s prominently, and none, except the 2 ladies, were in any way relevant to any war effort…

  7. Wixxy, I totaly agree, ANZAC Day should not be for sale.
    ANZAC Day and Wattle Day are ( arguably) our only two ‘folk’ days. They were created by the people for the people and should not be used for political or commercial gain. Both days are a testiment to our resilience and courageousness in the face of adversity.
    ANZAC Days meaning should never be sullied or made to compete.
    The media and the Ad men(same thing) have crossed the line on this, it shows that they have little in the way of ethics or morals. Any excuse to make a buck….. but to them it’s nothing personal…. just business.
    It would be interesting to find out if they, [sport code here], support the RSL out of their proceeds. The RSL’s run the ANZAC events in communities around the country. They assist many people, not only diggers, around Oz each year.
    Just a thought: If fauna and flora are being used as mascots by sporting clubs shouldn’t they get some form of compensation for such use.

  8. Thanks LOVO, interesting thought on the flora & fauna… maybe donations to National Parks or horticulture societies, most of these clubs make a bit of money on jersey sales..
    I don’t know if the footy gives anything to the RSL, most of the Football Clubs would see RSL clubs as the competition I would have thought… It would be interesting to know if any money raised goes to veterans charities…

  9. wixxy, you are way off. It is not “their” day, its our day. My grandfather served in WW1, my father in WW2. My son is serving right now. However we choose to observe the day is up to us. If I want to go to a dawn service, I will. If I want to watch my son’s regiment march on the day, I will. If I want to visit family, I will. If I want to go to the footy, I will do that too. It is not disrespectful. I certainly see no disrespect.
    If you are just winding us up, go jump.
    If you really mean this nonsense, get a life! Who says that you can prescribe for me or my family how we observe ANZAC?
    It is important to remember the sacrifices made in our name and to work to see that it is not necessary in the future.

  10. Peter, I’m with you on that son is also serving right now – a LS in the RAN with 2 tours of the Gulf and 2 tours of East Timor with the Feds to his credit.

    I believe that the point was, is sport the best way to observe ANZAC Day. For example the Collingwood/Essendon game is a very recent invention..Kevin Sheedy’s idea in the mid ’90’s. This can detract from the solemnity of the occasion.

  11. Fooles Troupe, it riles me that commentators call footballers ‘heroes’. So a bloke kicks a goal under pressure when his side needed it. Why the elevation to hero status?

    Keith Miller was commentating on a test match when a difficult chance went down in slips. Miller’s commentary went like this: “Only two people could have taken that catch. God or me”.


  12. What would the outrage be if the AFL programmed a game for Good Friday? Funny though, more people in this country celebrate ANZAC Day in this country than go to church, yet the church still yields power.

  13. The medals they give out to the best on ground in these games make me cringe. Awards go to the players who epitimise the fighting spirit of the ANZACs and are chosen by an Army representative. What a farce.

  14. having read all these posts and agreeing with many can I make one request, simply, a hero goes above and beyond what is expected or required… running into a burning building to save some one is heroic, to fight for your country in war is heroic…catching a ball in any sport, especially with what they are being paid IS NOT HEROIC. Could someone, anyone explain this to the media… heroes deserve the respect, sportsmen and women get a cheque. Admiration of a job well done is one thing, it does not make a hero.

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