Margaret Court is a dangerous heretic.

You may wonder why I would make such a bold statement?  Let me tell you. She is a charlatan and a hypocrite. Margaret Court preaches hate, disguised as Christian teaching and is making a great deal of money from it.  For a woman whose prior claim was hitting tennis balls with a racquet, there is much to ask about her beliefs and their genesis.

I don’t question her skill as a tennis player, nor the accolades she has been awarded for that skill.  She is, to date, the greatest ever Australian female tennis player.  But she doesn’t preach her hate because of her ability to play tennis – she reserves that for speaking on behalf of god. I also don’t believe for a second we should have her name emblazoned on a venue when her stance is so at odds with a majority of the community. Imagine a gay or lesbian tennis player who has to commit their sport on that court, knowing the woman for who it is named hates the idea of love?

This week, Margaret wrote a letter to the paper saying she wont fly Qantas because of their support of Marriage Equality.  It seems she will be walking everywhere as Jetstar is owned by Qantas, Virgin supports marriage equality and Virgin own a majority stake of Tiger Air, ergo, supporting Marriage Equality.  Its a a long walk from Sydney, where she lives, to Perth, where her non tax paying church, Victory Life Centre, is headquartered.

Court claims she supports a traditional view of marriage, which she is entitled to do.  She does claim, although not in this letter, her view is founded on her religious beliefs, and she will quote good old Leviticus about ‘man lying with man being an abomination’. The first two chapters of the bible are where she draws her values from. These two books of the bible might lead us on a merry dance however. According to many scientific dating methods, this planet earth is many millions of years old. However, from biblical chronology (Genesis 1 & 2) we can calculate that the span of time from the creation of Adam and Eve to the present is about 6,000 years, and involved a major flood where only Noah, his wife, his sons and their wives survived. So we are all the result of incestuous relationships, which the bible frowns upon.  You see where I am going here?

There’s loads of old testament for Margaret – she laps it up and the old book is quoted on her website everywhere.  There is a problem there though – the old book also says that women are not to teach the word of their god.  Oops.  Oh and women shouldn’t wear pants – Oops again. I wonder if she likes to tuck into a bacon sarni before mass on Sunday or hops in to a lovely plate of prawns and oysters on that holiest of holy days, good Friday.  Oops – also sins! If she has capsicums and tomatoes growing in the same garden bed – oops another one there.  The biggest of her sins, of course, is that Margaret wears glasses. It says in the bible one may not approach the altar of God if one has a defect in one’s sight. Big Ooops there!

The book of Exodus tells us we can sell our daughters in to slavery and that we should have no contact with a woman when she is having her period.  I would like to question Margaret Court on these subjects as well as knowing how many slaves she thinks it ok for me to have, how often I should be put to death for trimming my beard and hair, especially there at the temples where it gets super annoying.

Court preaches a destructive supernatural creed that is considered heresy by mainstream Christendom. There are very few people she doesn’t preach against – she is not a fan of single mothers, drug users, muslims, non liberal voters and homosexuals – and has publicly spoken about each of these groups.

Margaret Court read a bible from cover to cover to see her through illness. After retiring from her international tennis career in 1976 and while raising her young family, she slipped into a period of deep depression, feeling ‘guilty, unworthy, fearful and totally insignificant’. In 1979 she was hospitalised for depression and a torn heart valve.  It was after this and after watching a Fred Price video (Price is a fundamentalist pentecostal Word of Faith advocate), Court starting talking to her god – or herself perhaps. In 1982, after enrolling in the Rhema Bible Training Centre, court had her miracle.  Her heart valve was declared okay (probably an initial misdiagnosis but she claimed it was god).

Court claims god told her to start her church, Victory Life Centre, one morning when she was washing the breakfast dishes. Or she was having an episode – up to the elbows in suds and gloves, she heard god tell her ‘I want you to start this work. Step out [ie, in faith] and I will show you how to do it as you go.’ It was clear and it was definitely God, according to her book.

Margaret Court, in the days of christ, would have been crucified for such thoughts – and considered a heretic. Courts website for her church asks people to tithe or donate a % of their income to keep her good work up. How much of this is income is taxed is a very good question, and I am hoping to find some answers. Churches are exempt from tax.

What does all of this have to do with me and why am I getting cranky?  Court and other fundamentalists see their view as the only view.  Every poll for the last 5 years has seen support for marriage equality grow – among christians, (the real ones) among conservatives and among Liberal voters.  Most of the other side and the centre has seen common sense prevail. More than 65% of Australians support marriage equalit.  In a democracy, this is a majority view, and although Margaret court has every right to express her opinion, it doesn’t make it fact! I dont believe in god, the bible or any of that other hocus pocus hooey, so why should I, in a secular society, have my relationship determined by something to which I hold no faith?

Margaret Court is both delusional and a charlatan.  $M180 of taxpayer funds were spent upgrading the tennis court which bears her name – and Ms Court, presumably as a non tax paying senior religious figure, should not have her name adorn a building funded by taxpayers.  Single mothers, muslims, homosexuals, non liberal voters and possibly even drug users paid for that stadium upgrade – lets award a more deserving Australian the honour Court does not deserve.

Court feels the first two chapters of the bible explain everything, as she says in this interview with The Project on Channel Ten.

Lets rename the arena for Evonne Goolagong.. one of our most successful indigenous athletes, an incredible tennis player and someone who has been at the other end of bigotry.