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Why the squeamishness about sex?

Date

Steve Mascord

Titans CEO David May.

Titans CEO David May. Photo: Getty Images

You are probably expecting this week's Discord to deal with hefty issues such as the salary cap, collective bargaining agreement and stadiums policy. And we will get there.

But I found the story this week about the wife of Gold Coast Titans chief executive David May, Kortney Olson, intriguing. You know the one - about how she used to star in "fetish porn", had a drug problem and has now been appointed a volunteer strength and conditioning coach to the Titans under-20s.

Reaction to this story has either been outrage - the suggestion that she and even May must be sacked - or mirth. In England, League Weekly ran the headline "Ex-porn Star Helps With 'Cor' Strength".

I am not going to criticise colleague Peter Badel for writing this story because it's extremely illuminating about the way we see ourselves culturally.

How many players over the years have we given second, third and fourth chances after getting on the wrong side of the law, which to the best of my knowledge Kortney Olson has not?

Let's check the rap sheets of every ex-player involved in coaching under-20s sides. I'm sure some would not make for pretty reading.

We want her husband to resign because of her past? I would have thought family members doing volunteer work for clubs was part of the fabric of rugby league ...

We are willing to accept torrents of money from gambling firms but "porn king" Con Ange (who I accept shouldn't be a sponsor) is not even allowed in dressing rooms.

Why are we so squeamish about sex? Every time Sam Burgess gets asked by a panel show host about how his "search for a girlfriend" is going, do you think they're referring to sitting on the park bench holding hands?

One of the most interesting comments by any reader during the Cronulla group sex furore a couple of years ago came from a woman who wrote at the bottom of an online news story that she engages in sex with groups of men regularly, that it is completely consensual and she enjoys it.

Sure, there is a power imbalance there that would disturb most of us - but it is not for us to tell her what she does in her leisure time. Why is rugby league forcing a certain set of values on people - and hounding out those who don't conform?

That is, gamble a lot, drink a lot, spend hours in front of the TV, but be in a monogamous, house-owning relationship with a kid or two.

I know there is a line to be drawn but we are drawing it in the wrong place, not far below "puritanical". We are willing to forgive our players for just about anything but we seem to have far less tolerance and open mindedness towards everyone else. It doesn't help us in our quest to get the same demographic spread as the AFL.

Jury still out

There seems to be a wide variety of opinions floating around right now about the performance of the ARL Commission and, specifically, its chairman John Grant.

Much of the criticism - which originates in clubland - comes from two areas. One, it's mild xenophobia: new CEO David Smith doesn't know who Cameron Smith is. Two, it's the fact that nothing has happened yet - in a variety of areas including sponsorship, radio rights, the collective bargaining agreement, the salary cap, competition naming rights, etc.

But unlike in mathematics, in this equation two equals one. Once the decision are made, if the answers are unfamiliar or left-field, then we revert to number one: xenophobia.

I reckon Telstra will end up with the digital and naming rights. I think the commission will eventually eat into around $30 million of its futures fund to give the players a raise. I think Triple M and 2GB will get the radio rights (thanks, scoop!).

When that happens, we'll get a clearer picture of how Grant and his commission are going. The players should get a set percentage of turnover and the salary cap should equal the club grants. If all sides can agree on this as an objective, we'll get progress.

I'm not saying the commissioners are innocent of the accusations levelled at them. I'm not saying they're guilty. Any sensible observer would accept the jury is still out and will be for a little while yet.

Let's go to the comments

As usual, thanks for all the comments. Bob and John discussed whether Australians would ever side with the taxman. It was pointed out to me that British residents perhaps don't have the same adversarial attitude to the taxman because most of them don't have to fill out tax returns.

Starkers made some good comments about the suburban grounds issue. I am hearing that a millionaire wants to build a covered, 20,000-seat stadium in Alexandria of all places. The government has now backed itself into a corner; it can't really help this dude, can it?

CreepieMonet, I want to point out that I didn't say anywhere in last week's column that it was a choice between footy grounds and schools. It's not that simple and I acknowledge that (um, as they say in the classics, reporters don't write the headlines).

stojo01, I can explain the apparent discrepancy simply. Globally, I am scared of rugby league being gobbled up by rugby union. In Australia, with all the money it generates, if it needs the poker machine dollar to survive then it is being grossly mismanaged!

Tom and KellyBellyFonte had an entertaining exchange which I could not possibly add anything worthwhile to!

Here's the forum

Here's the podcast

36 comments so far

  • Good Grief, what David May and Kortney Olson get up to off the field is of no consequence nor interest to the vast majority. The prudes are probably scared the under 20's may have to start wearing leather shorts or whipping footballs as strength training? Get a grip folks, what has that got to do with playing Loogue? Sometimes I think that some people should improve their IQ to somewhere above their shoe size.

    Commenter
    edgewing
    Location
    Adelaide
    Date and time
    December 06, 2012, 11:28AM
    • Hahahaha.

      "Righto lads! Into the gimp suits!!! Hurry up!!! Those midgets aren't going to spank themselves!!!"

      Commenter
      Coal Baron
      Date and time
      December 06, 2012, 5:20PM
  • "We are willing to forgive our players for just about anything but we seem to have far less tolerance and open mindedness towards everyone else."

    It's not even about 'forgiveness'. I don't see why it's anyone right to decide if she even needs it in the first place. The only people whose business it is are the people directly impacted.

    Commenter
    DM
    Date and time
    December 06, 2012, 11:32AM
    • How many fathers, brothers, uncles, nephews cousins etc have watched porn in the past? How many still continue to watch it? How many of their partners have and how many them still do - including with their partners? And how many of them have taken drugs and continue to?
      We are a phenomenally hypocritical society. Cowardly often. Most people wouldn't have the courage of Kortney Olsen or David May. Most people lie daily to each other to maintain their tiny patch, terrified someone might judge them as they judge.
      I say good on the club for having an open enough mind to employ someone based on (God forbid!) merit.

      It's 2012 people...

      Commenter
      adamant
      Date and time
      December 06, 2012, 11:43AM
      • Ah the self-righteous are always lurking, waiting to inflict others with their holier than thou attitudes, and there is nothing the media like better than to whip up these sheltered individuals for a good story.
        Having come back to Australia after 20yrs overseas the hardest thing I find I have to come to terms with is the self-righteous do-gooders that seek to ban anything they don't like or don't partake of, whether it has any impact on there sheltered lives or not? I just can't understand this ... live and let live. I would hazard a guess that this penchant for controlling others harks back to our convict and colonial roots? As the gov seem to push this line pretty hard too.

        Commenter
        Mike
        Location
        SYD
        Date and time
        December 06, 2012, 11:57AM
        • It seems that the media have a knack of finding these people who "demand" morality, decency and Christian attitudes. Quite often I have found that the media has found these calls from society just as a news story is breaking. It really is quite amazing at just how quick this happens.

          After a stint of living overseas I came home to find the quality of journalism here had declined from object to subject reporting. Unless an article has the word "scandal", "outrage", "injustice" or "child" in it then it really isn't worth reporting on.

          Journalism 101.......

          Commenter
          Mark
          Location
          Inner West
          Date and time
          December 06, 2012, 3:16PM
      • so by such analysis, i should leave my partner just because she's reading Fifty Shades?

        Commenter
        Trent
        Date and time
        December 06, 2012, 12:06PM
        • Yes. Yes you should. Not because of the kinky sex. But because she has poor taste in literature.

          Commenter
          tester
          Date and time
          December 06, 2012, 1:56PM
      • News flash to the wowsers: performing in porn is not a crime.
        There is nothing, absolutely nothing, in this woman's porn past that warrants sanction.
        That she was a drug addict was sad. That she overcame it speaks volumes to her strength of character.
        The wowsers who want this woman run out of town because she offended their personal moral code need to get over themselves and stop telling other people how to live their lives.
        As we have seen with the likes of Jimmy Swaggart, who when he was arrested had porn magazines all over the floor of his church-funded car, the loutest voices of self-righteous rage go home to indulge in the very thing against which they have been preaching.
        If the wowsers really want to become uncomfortable, look up the statistics that the Eros Foundation has compiled on the number of child molesters in the churches as compared with the adult industry. The last time I looked, the court convictions showed that a child was at least 400 times safer in the care of a porn performer, prostitute, pimp, or pornographer than they were in the company of a member of the Christian clergy.

        Commenter
        CarlT
        Location
        on society's scrap heap
        Date and time
        December 06, 2012, 12:07PM
        • +1

          Commenter
          Mike
          Location
          SYD
          Date and time
          December 06, 2012, 2:29PM

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