Betts’ bid to wipe out race taunts

The Advertiser - - SPORT -

ED­DIE Betts has been racially abused on­line three times this year, but is de­ter­mined to con­tinue be­ing an in­dige­nous leader in the face of vi­cious taunt­ing.

The vet­eran Carl­ton small for­ward, who is in his 16th AFL sea­son, wants to leave a legacy for young in­dige­nous foot­ballers to feel safe in pro­fes­sional sport.

The for­mer Ade­laide cham­pion has been racially abused count­less times through­out his 316-game ca­reer. There have been mul­ti­ple slurs di­rected at Betts ev­ery year dur­ing the past four sea­sons, in­clud­ing in a game against Port Ade­laide in 2017.

“Peo­ple make fake ac­counts and they racially abuse the hell out of you,” Betts told Phil Davis’ ABC pod­cast.

“It’s hap­pened to me three times al­ready this year. We’ve tried to find them; we’ve al­ready spo­ken to the AFL in­tegrity depart­ment.

“It’s kind of hard be­cause once they do it, they delete it.”

Betts says he and other play­ers “feel guilty” about not sup­port­ing Adam Goodes enough when the Syd­ney leg­end was sub­jected to con­tin­ued racial abuse to­wards the end of his AFL ca­reer in 2015.

“I think (young play­ers are) scared be­cause of what hap­pened to Good­esy; they think it’s go­ing to hap­pen to them,” Betts said. “If you racially vil­ify me, I’ll call you out ... but some other in­dige­nous kid may be too scared to talk about it.”

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