AFL player Taylor ‘Tex’ Walker proved why he and other footballers are great role models for young Australians when he made a racist comment about an Indigenous player on an opposing team recently. Walker was found guilty of racism during a SANFL game and earns his second nomination for The Frownlow Medal.
The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is the most recent recipient.
Walker has been banned for six AFL games after it was proven that he made a racist comment during the game in which he was not playing. He now misses the last three games of the 2021 season and the first three games of the 2022 season. He also apologised and will make a donation of $20,000 to an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander program in SA.
Walker made the comments after the controversy surrounding the recent Collingwood Magpies racism scandal, and the enormous racism scandal which drove Sydney Swans champion Adam Goodes out of the game.
“I’m a great Aussie role model,” stated Walker.
“Me and other footy players are big role models to young Aussie kids and I take this role seriously. Australia is a racist country, so I made a racist comment. Australia is really racist towards Aboriginal people, so I made a racist comment towards an Aboriginal person.”
“I’m also trying to be a great role model to my son. I want him to grow up to be just like me.”
Tex was first nominated for Frownlow honours in 2016, after he engaged in a heated social media battle with tennis player Nick Kyrgios. There is no suggestion that Walker argued with Kyrgios because the controversial tennis player is of Greek extraction.