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Posted by: Charles Jan 13 2018, 11:05 AM
Australian Open 2018: Billie Jean King wants Margaret Court Arena renamed

Ben McKay
Friday, 12 January 2018 2:25PM

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Tennis trailblazer Billie Jean King has called for a renaming of Margaret Court Arena due to the Australian legend's divisive views on sexuality.

King has returned to Melbourne for the first time in eight years, and has been named by Tennis Australia as the Australian Open woman of the year on the 50th anniversary of her first title in Australia.

King said she originally lobbied for Court to be honoured by tournament organisers but she could no could longer support the showcourt bearing her friend's name because of her views.

"I was a proponent of her's, trying to get her to the best possible court," King said.

"She won 64 grand slams. She won more than everybody else.

"When Rocket, Rod Laver, got given the arena, I said 'what are you going to do for Margaret?'.

"But I think it's its really important, if you're going to have your name on anything, that you're hospitable, inclusive, you're opening arms to everyone that comes to a public facility."

King said Court's attacks on sexually diverse people were the last straw.

"I was fine until lately she said so many derogatory things about my community. I'm a gay woman; about the LGBTIQ community," she said.

"That really went deep in my heart and soul.

"I don't think she should have her name (on it) any more."

King said a change of the facility might have already occurred if Court had targeted other groups.

"If you were talking about indigenous people, Jews or any other people, I can't imagine the public would want to have her name on something.

"Maybe it's our community, the LGBTIQ community -people might feel differently."

King said she would refuse to play on the arena if she was appearing at this year's tournament - but she wouldn't counsel others to do so.

Instead, she encouraged players to think about the issue and "look inside their heart" before making a decision.

Court, a fundamentalist Christian, has said Australia will pay for the recent legislation of same-sex marriage off the back of a public vote.

She had previously taken aim at Casey Dellacqua's decision to raise children as a same-sex parent.

So, according to Ms King, we should rename an arena named in honour of one of our sporting greats because she (Margaret Court) has the temerity to express her religious beliefs! What ever happened to freedom of speech and freedom of religion. This is a sporting stadium and named after a sporting identity. Keep this reverse discrimination out of our sports.

Posted by: Alicia Jan 13 2018, 12:13 PM
Sour grapes.

Posted by: lee Jan 13 2018, 02:16 PM
You may hold a dissenting opinion. You may not express it.

Posted by: charka Jan 13 2018, 08:09 PM
good luck with that

Posted by: scepo Jan 14 2018, 06:30 AM
In this progressive age we find ourselves, there is no surprise here.

But I ask who is the bigot? Who is the hypocrite? And who is promoting inclusivity?

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