Collingwood AFL boss and radio host Eddie McGuire has defended a joke he made about drowning The Age’s chief football writer Caroline Wilson, claiming he’s comments were made in “in the spirit of the fun of the day” and have been taken out of context.
The often controversial broadcaster said he’d pay $50,000 to see Wilson stay under a pool of iced water “and charge an extra $10,000 for everyone to stand around the outside and bomb her”. The comments were allegedly made in jest during a charity day at the MCG on the June long weekend Monday called the “Big Freeze at the G”. The stunt saw celebrities slide into a vat of iced-water to raise money for research into Motor Neurone Disease.
After a number of complaints about McGuire’s comment, with some arguing he advocated violence against women, McGuire said on his MMM radio show in Melbourne this morning: “I have been really disappointed that these comments have led to these feelings from people
“I apologise and retract them in the spirit of what we’re trying to achieve, and that is to look after women and children in our community.”
However, not everybody has been so forgiving. Wilson herself said this morning that she felt McGuire’s comments had “crossed the line”. There is understood to be an ongoing issue between the journalist and McGuire.
Fellow Melbourne radio personality Meshel Laurie was even less forgiving. This morning on KIIS 101.1, Laurie said McGuire should not be allowed to broadcast on air following his comments about Wilson being drowned.
“To be honest, it’s no more or less than I would expect from someone who compared Adam Goodes to King Kong. I mean, you know what, you’re a pig. And you have no compunction in casual racism, and so to suggest that it would be hilarious to drown a woman and have all your mates, and call them in on it…”
“Listen I’m aware there will be blowback because people will say that I’m criticising Eddie McGuire because he rates higher than I do on Melbourne radio, I think they will say that. Because I am saying absolutely fundamentally, that he should not be allowed to broadcast. This is a man who cannot speak without spreading hate and now encouraging violence against women. He should not be allowed to broadcast, it’s that simple,” Laurie said.
However, the embattled McGuire has found some support in none other than Pauline Hanson. Speaking to Seven’s Sunrise show this morning, the controversial politician said: “Some of these journalists, I’d drown half of them. Some of them, what they write, sensationalisism [sic]. They just don’t have regard for anyone else.
“‘I remember years ago when Tim Fisher said ‘she should be burnt at the stake’; they printed that,” Hanson said.