Image Courtesy Of Janice Petersen SBS Facebook. Anna Wintour, Janice Petersen and Baz Lurhmann at the Australian Open Inspirational Series Brunch On Thursday 24th January 2019
On Thursday 24th January, passionate tennis fan and legendary Vogue editor in chief, Anna Wintour, gave the keynote speech at the Australian Open Inspirational Series brunch in Melbourne. During the speech, she championed LGBT rights, called for the renaming of Margaret Court Arena and advocated for people in leadership roles to step up and move the world towards a more inclusive future.
On Renaming Margaret Court Arena
“It is inconsistent with the sport for Margaret Court’s name to be on a stadium that does so much to bring all people together across their differences—this much, I think, is clear to anyone who understands the spirit and the joy of the game.”
“Intolerance has no place in tennis; what we love up in the stands is watching these remarkable men and women exceed themselves while being themselves, in many different forms.”
“Margaret was a champion on the court. But a meeting point for players of all nations, preferences, and backgrounds should celebrate somebody who was a champion off it as well.”
On PM Scott Morrison
“Not everyone in power in Australia today seems to admire the country’s leadership role.”
“Like many of you, I've been alarmed by your prime minister's record on LGBTQ rights, which seems backward in all senses: That no one can be expelled from school for their orientation should not require clarification.”
“A government should protect its people, not make it unclear whether they will be accepted. We are struggling with these issues in the U.S., too.”
On Ordinary People Leading The World Towards A More Inclusive Future
“Personally, though, I have been most inspired over the past year by women, people of colour, and young people being bold, standing up, telling their stories, and outlining paths toward a different future.”
“They weren't in power, but they have become leaders by daring to speak up. It is better to engage than to step back. We can move forward and together, or backward in division. Tennis gives us a clue, I think, which of these is the better game.”
Reaction To Her Comments
On Friday, Margaret Court responded to Wintour’s comments by telling The West Australian: "The saddest thing is someone coming from America and telling us in this nation what to do."
"I've loved my nation, played for my nation. There's probably no one who has been more supportive of, or spoke more highly of, the game of tennis."
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton returned serve by becoming probably the first person to ever call the fashion doyenne tacky.
"I thought it was a bit tacky actually, to be honest," he told Nine's Today Show on Friday.
"Somebody coming here to criticise, to make a statement that wasn't factually correct anyway, is pretty shabby."
"I mean, she thrives on media and attention - good luck."
Former foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop - who attended the brunch and sat with Wintour at the tennis on Thursday - was more supportive, telling The Australian that Wintour had some “pretty pertinent points to make.”
I think that's game, set and match to Ms Wintour.