Wednesday, 8 July 2015

The death of a football coach

has taken up many pages in our state newspaper and many minutes of other media time.
He was, allegedly, murdered by his son - who is now in a secure facility undergoing assessment. 
It is a genuine tragedy and should not be dismissed lightly. The remaining members of the family must be going through a peculiar sort of hell-on-earth right now. I can't begin to imagine what it must be like for them. I hope I never know.
It is also hard on the team he coached and it will take them time to adjust to playing without his guidance. 
But I still loathe the fuss made by the media. There were  no less than thirteen full pages made of this man's violent death on the day after the event. Six more pages followed the next day. And we are still getting coverage several days later. 
All that coverage must make it even harder for his family. Even if they aren't seeing papers and watching the news and the "footy" commentaries it must mean many condolences from strangers. 
I know "people love their sport" - and I don't. I know I am that rarity - someone who couldn't care less about sport. I know that, in one sense, sport is a form of modern warfare. People believe sport is important. 
There are much more important things. There was one small article much further into the paper about the situation in Greece. It wasn't very accurate. Nothing was said about the other potential disaster - China. These things will have a far greater impact on the lives of many people both here and there.  Next winter will be hard on many people in these countries and deaths will almost certainly result. 
The same fuss will not be made. We did not make the same fuss for the violent death of an outstanding heart surgeon, a man who had saved lives. 
So yes, it is a tragedy but there is another tragedy here as well and that is the over-reaction to his death. That it should be seen as more important than the deaths of many other people who have done as much in their own way and who have been equally loved by their families and friends is also tragic. 
All people matter.


Judy Edmonds said...

It's an important reminder that not all domestic violence is committed by men against women. Children attacking their parents is under-reported and the social work, etc, system is not set up to deal with it properly. Otherwise, it is a horrible private tragedy that is unfortunately public because of who he was - only the remaining family can know whether this makes it harder or not, but I can only imagine that it would.

catdownunder said...

Very good point Judy! I can only imagine that mother/wife and daughter/sister are going through something the rest of us have no hope of understanding