NRL should sack gender advisor: ACL

20 May 2009

By The Record

Pro-porn advisor to NRL, Cathering Lumby, should get the sack, says the Australian Christian Lobby.


Matthew Johns.


By Anthony Barich

The Australian Christian Lobby has called on the National Rugby League to sack its ‘gender adviser’ Catherine Lumby over her public comments in 2004 that have showed continued approval of group sex that has led to superstar Matthew Johns being stood down by his club and Channel 9.
During a scandal involving the NRL Bulldogs’ 2004 group sex session at Coffs Harbour, Ms Lumby told ABC Radio: “Speaking as an academic, I think that there’s no problem with any behaviour which is consensual in sexual terms.”
ACL managing director Jim Wallace said that Ms Lumby said this straight after being appointed by the NRL to a position which involves helping to advise its young players on gender relations.
She is also the author of the ‘Porn Report’ which extols the virtues of pornography, he said, and she has also been an advocate for making X-rated pornography freely available to adults throughout Australia. Its production and sale is currently banned in Australian states.
Last week, Johns was revealed to have been involved in group sex with a 19-year-old New Zealand woman during a preseason tour in 2002, leading to him being stood down by Channel 9, where he is a key figure in its NRL Footy Show, and by Melbourne Storm, where he was a part-time assistant coach.
As the NRL Footy Show relies to an extent on Johns’ personality, there have been reports that the scandal could kill off the show after 15 years, as the show’s ratings have been described as dismal and it has suffered its own share of controversy, highlighted when its host, former International player Paul ‘Fatty’ Vautin, insulted a disabled security guard last year.
Mr Wallace said that the community has been rightly aghast at the controversy involving Johns and the message the incident sends to the game’s hordes of young fans.
“We strongly welcome comments from NRL boss David Gallup about the need for everyone involved in the game to change their attitude towards women, but feel this is rather hollow while the NRL is looking to a long-standing apologist for the porn industry who supports group sex to help change its culture,” Mr Wallace said.
“Obviously there are real concerns as to whether a culture which exploits and degrades women is genuinely changing in the NRL, as well as in other sporting codes.
“How could the NRL possibly think it will when they are asking someone who supports group sex to help rugby league change its group sex culture?”