Australian athletes wear blackface as Serena and Venus Williams
This is the level of sheer ignorance we are dealing with in Australia when three Tasmanian footy players decided to do a Blackface stunt to make a mockery' of non-white people @alexisohanian @serenawilliams @newscomauHQ pic.twitter.com/RCD0HZuizS
— This Fernandez Rocks💃🏽 (@HA_Fernandez) September 19, 2018
Australia’s Penguin Football Club issued an apology Wednesday after a photo of three players wearing blackface and tennis skirts to imitate Venus and Serena Williams, as well as Sydney Swans Australian rules footballer Aliir Aliir, ignited outrage.
“The Penguin Football Club were not aware that three of our players intended to dress in this manner and the incident did not happen at our facilities,” the Tasmanian club posted to its website.
“It was not their intention to upset anyone and all they meant to do was dress as one of their sporting idols. Their actions were never intended to be racist in any way.”
The photo in question, which features Mitch Stanley and Matt Chamberlain as the Williams sisters and Beau Grundy as Aliir, was uploaded to a public social media page, according to People. Posted for Mad Monday — commonly known as the end-of-season celebration for professional football stars in Australia — the image was ultimately deleted.
“Just when you thought we could relax because Australia at least hasn’t had a blackface situation for a while…. along comes Tasmania to save the day,” radio host Michelle Hunder tweeted Tuesday.
“@PenguinTwoBlue do you have a comment about the players in your team wearing ‘black-face’ ..? Disgusting. They should be stood down immediately and permanently. Unless you support racists? Let this team know what you think about the latest display of repulsive racism,” penned another Twitter user.
The Penguin Football Club noted those involved had been reprimanded and “will be given support to make sure they understand that their behavior was racist and hurtful and that it will not happen again.
“The players concerned have acknowledged that what they did was completely and utterly unacceptable and would like to apologize unreservedly for their lack of judgment… Sometimes players make mistakes and for that we apologize,” the statement concluded.
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