Grounds for Discontent
During the last week I became involved in an unpleasant #sokkahtwitter pile-on against someone who had objected to the new Melbourne Victory complex in Footscray Park next to Victoria University.
I suggested that the person's sporting alignments meant that their position lacked some credibility.
You'd have a little more credibility on this issue if you weren't such a hard-core footy fan. Checked your time line for [sporting] references ..... . Soccer doesn't doesn't seem to figure in your world view so of course you oppose the creation of space for the game.
I regret doing that but only because this person was viciously attacked by a number of trolls. I don't regret the content of my statement or the tone in which I said it.
The complainant had several gripes
- alienation of parkland
- ratepayer subsidy of a wealthy professional sporting organisation
- where will the people do "park" things?
I suggested that if this person understood the history of soccer's exclusion from inner city infrastructure and enclosed grounds a less antagonitistic tone might be adopted.
This argument had little impact unfortunately.
There are a number of points of contention across Australian soccer history:
- Perth 1906
- Sydney 1920 https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/221496511
- Hobart 1922-24
- Adelaide Oval 1923
- Adelaide Oval 1925
- Fitzroy CG 1927
- Gabba 1930
- Perth 1940
- Sunshine 1943
- Lidcombe 1944
- SCG 1946
- SCG 1947
- Hobart 1951 Glass on the pitch
- MCG 1953
- Albert Park 1953 https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/23228076
PARKLANDS are our heritage, they belong to us the people, and we must defend them, the Rev. Dr. C. Irving Benson; said yesterday
- Albert Park 1954 https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/23421283
Labor 'must save the parks for children's play'
THE Labor Party had to fight to preserve Melbourne's inner parklands, Mr. F. McManus, A.L.P. assistant secretary, told the opening session of the annual Victorian A.L.P. Conference last night.
He was replying to criticism of the Labor Party's veto earlier this year on a proposal to fence a section of Albert Park for soccer matches.
The veto was criticised by Senator Kennelly, chairman of the Albert Park trustees, who said migrants from overseas should have a right to play and attend their own type of football in a minute area of the 688-acre park, where no sport had been refused a ground.
Mr. McManus said professional soccer interests, which had great influence and large amounts of money to spend, should not have priority over other sports in the search for playing areas.
These soccer interests showed no interest in grounds in the outer suburban areas. If the trend of fencing off parklands continued, a ring of enclosed grounds diverted to a single sport, would be established on Crown land in industrial areas.
Mr. McManus said once a fence was erected, buildings would arise. Finally the children from industrial areas would be excluded following claims that sportingproperty had to be protected.
- Melb Showgrounds Juventus 1954 https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/26590905