Another football season has passed here in Australia (and that's AFL not soccer), with the Grand Final having been played on Saturday. I don't really have any feelings about football - I neither like nor dislike it. I am fairly rare in this viewpoint - most people either love it passionately or avoid it like the Plague. Perhaps this is because of how I was brought up - my mother was always happy to watch a game but my father was a member of the Anti-Football League. Add to this the fact that I am not really a sporty person within myself anyway and you come up with an attitude of basic ambivalence.
What I'm thinking about today, though, is the behaviour of players off the field. Yet another rape allegation has cropped up here involving players from the team that won the Grand Final (http://www.theage.com.au/afl/afl-news/magpie-denials-as-smears-emerge-20101005-1663y.html) What's interesting is how the media and the public in general have responded to it. An ex-footballer has tweeted that women who go home with men at 3 o'clock in the morning should not be surprised when sex is demanded of them (even, as in this case, if it's group sex) while a local tv identity has described women who go out with footballers as "strays".
At the heart of all this is an enormous disrespect for women and for their sexuality. Women are still being identified as available playthings for men if they dare to mix within certain social circles or if they conduct themselves in a certain way. In short, as this argument always seems to return to, they are 'asking for it' if they ignore society's apparent rules. There are still significant restraints upon women's freedom as this case (and the many like it) clearly illustrates.
What do you think? Is there a similar situation within other countries?