Adam Goodes is a star of Australian Rules Football, and has been awarded the league’s highest honor twice. Adam is one of the most successful people in Australia with an Aboriginal background. Over his last year of playing, racist Australian fans have peppered him with racist curses and chants. Goodes has retired from Football, and has been hired as a Brand Ambassador for leading Australian retailer David Jones.
Not without the racists piping up about it…
David Jones’ Facebook page has been flooded with abusive and racist posts after former Sydney Swans star Adam Goodes was unveiled as the retailer’s latest brand ambassador.
The messages, which include remarks about indigenous Australians and dozens of boos, began appearing on Sunday soon after the retailer posted a campaign video featuring the former Australian of the Year.
Goodes is to star in the David Jones “It’s In You” campaign as one of six ambassadors, including model Jessica Gomes and You Am I frontman Tim Rogers.
He will also advise the company on reconciliation issues and its corporate social responsibility program.
“Didn’t really like David Jones as a store or chain but can be sure I will never set foot or spend a cent in there now,” a Facebook post from Michael Tierney, of Brisbane, said.
A David Jones spokeswoman reaffirmed the chain’s support of Goodes following the abusive posts, most of which Fairfax Media has opted not to publish.
“David Jones is proud to have Adam Goodes, a powerful and inspirational Australian, join its family of ambassadors,” the spokeswoman said.
“We have received significant positive feedback from our staff, customers, vendors and other stakeholders regarding Adam’s appointment and our latest brand campaign.”
The ambassadorship, the result of months of negotiations between the retailer and the two-time Brownlow medallist, is Goodes’ first new role since he retired last month.
Goodes has since revealed that he had contemplated leaving earlier, amid the booing controversy that plagued his final season.
However, the 35-year-old told the Swans’ Club Champion dinner that the outpouring of support after he sat out the round 18 clash against the Adelaide Crows at the SCG changed his mind.
“To see the supporters, our supporters, who have stuck by me for the longest part of my journey and have always been there to support me and this football club – that’s the reason why I wanted to come back,” he said.
By mid-afternoon David Jones’ Facebook page told a similar story, as supporters flooded the Goodes post with messages of support.
The most popular comments on the thread were overwhelmingly in support of the AFL super star and the department store by 2pm.
“All anyone has to do is read the comments of this video to know that Adam Goodes holds more class, patience, and bravery than everyone [sic] of these people seizing on a pack mentality to let their racism fly,” commented Josh Forward. “Great campaign, amazing ambassador.”
The massive swing of opinion may have been driven by several media reports and high profile personalities drawing attention to the abusive posts throughout the day.
Media commentator and author Tracey Spicer posted a link ot the DJs’ Facebook page on her own public Facebook site and encouraged her followers to post their approval of the new brand ambassador.