The review itself isn't hot air.. Responses to it are though. Everyone wants it to have been an overall review of howuch racism was in Collingwoods culture, so many believe that's what it is. But the Pies reviewed the right thing - what it is they can improve. What is in their control.To be frank, the significance of the report's findings are starting to resemble a helium filled balloon floating off into the sky. At one time, I believed I had a fairly firm grasp on the string, but over time my grip failed and the balloon is rapidly receding from sight.
If the review delved deeply as far back as Winmar and Syd Jackson, but ignored players actually at the club, particularly in recent times, then the significance of its findings elude me. I don't understand why the media and lots of incensed individuals seized upon the report and were so outraged by Eddie's 'proud moment' statement if all that the findings basically delivered was an acknowledgement of the existence of systemic racism, without fixing points on a timeline or indicating any instance of anyone at the club actually suffering from its effects.
By all means, institute all 18 recommendations and make Collingwood the model of how to conduct an organisation providing equal opportunity for everyone along with systems of appeal for anyone who feels even slightly aggrieved by the club's actions and policies. No one wants to be a follower of a club that is reputed to discriminate against or disadvantage people of colour.
If you think back to your teaching days, depending on the school, there would have been a fair few racist incidents, but many of them were out of the school's control. You and the school were responsible for preventative education and you and the school were responsible for responding to incidents in a way that minimised harm and reduced the likelihood of future incidents.
Under current definitions, if you responded in a way that was likely to cause ongoing issues, it's structural racism. I'd argue that under that definition most schools and teachers in the 90s were dishing out structural racism. We gave the name caller a bollocking without finding out the underlying issues or offering mediation. The name callers usually got more pissed off and treated the kid worse. And often the name wasn't really the result of racism. It was a spiteful revenge for something the kid had done wrong. We were the overlords of systemic racism, but we weren't racist boogeyman, we just didn't know how to do better.
I don't see an AFL club or any organisation having different responsibilities in this regard. So the Pies reviewed the right thing, what was in their control. If people don't understand the review and look down on us calling us offensive names, then fu** him. They have replaced the genuine racists of yesteryear and are on the path to modern day bigotry where who we exclude for very no reason has changed, but we're still excluding for no reason - under the banner of inclusion.