‘This egg has united people,’ teen says of anti-bias protest
SYDNEY – The Australian teenager known as “Egg Boy,” speaking publicly to the media for the first time since he cracked an egg on a far-right politician’s head, acknowledged, “I understand what I did was not the right thing to do.”
“However,” the teenager, Will Connolly, 17, said in an interview with Channel 10, an Australian television channel that aired Monday evening, “this egg has united people.”
Connolly, who has become an international symbol against bigotry because of the encounter, added that the episode had been used to raise tens of thousands of dollars for the families of those killed in the March 15 terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand.
That money is from a fundraising page that was set up for the teenager and initially intended to help cover Connolly’s legal fees and to buy “more eggs.”
By Monday, it had raised almost 80,000 Australian dollars, about $56,000.
A law firm has said it would represent Connolly pro bono, allowing all funds raised through the page to be donated toward victims of the Christchurch attacks.
Connolly’s abrupt transformation from anonymous Australian teenager to international sensation began one day after the Christchurch shootings, when Fraser Anning – a far-right Australian senator who blamed Muslim immigration for the attack – gave a news conference in Melbourne.
Connolly, a resident of the city, crept behind the senator and smashed an egg on his head.
Anning then struck the teenager twice in the head, and the teenager was tackled by the senator’s supporters.
The egging, captured on video, raced through social media. In the days since, thousands of people around the world have embraced Connolly’s actions, and the teenager has been offered concert tickets for life, captured in street art, and honored by basketball players and talk show hosts.
Anning has not apologized for his comments and said the teenager deserved what he got.
A lawyer for Connolly, Peter Gordon, said last week that there was “no indication” that Connolly would be charged with a crime and added that his client had no plans to take legal action against Anning.
Explaining how the egging had come to be, he said that given the tragedy in Christchurch, when he saw Anning’s statement he was “just flat-out disgusted.”