Australia’s great new orator is… Matty Johns? Yep.
Just days after Stan Grant’s “Martin Luther King moment” went viral, former rugby league boofhead Matty Johns has had his own MLK-worthy moment.
While hosting The Grill Team, the Triple M radio personality launched into an Australia Day speech that would have made even Gough Whitlam stop and take notice.
“I hear people talk about the past in this country like they were better days,” he told co-hosts Mark Geyer and Gus Worland.
“We need to believe that Australia’s best days are still ahead of her. Acknowledge and respect the past but don’t want for it.
“With the threat of terrorism, the temptation is to shut our borders, close in, shut the door, withdraw from the world a step or two. But I mean really, who are we kidding? We’re the product of multiculturalism. That’s who we are. I mean what gives us the right, right now to decide to turn our backs on some poor bludger and his family fleeing horror in his homeland?”
The man formerly known as Reg Reagan then shared the story of his father-in-law, Tony Magnocavallo, who migrated to Australia from Italy after World War II.
“Tony and (his wife) Connie, well, they were able to rebuild their lives in Australia,” said the former Newcastle Knights and Cronulla Sharks star.
“They had seven kids and they even owned a few houses. They gave up their Italian citizenship to become Aussies. And when Tony celebrated his birthday he didn’t celebrate the day he entered the world back in Foggia. Tony’s new birthday was the day he became an Australian citizen.
“He once said to me … ‘This is the greatest country in the world, because if you’re willing to work hard, you can have absolutely everything you want’.
“The Chinese, Vietnamese, the Lebanese, the Tongans, the Russians, the Prussians, the Poms, the Pols, the Irish, the Greeks, the Japanese, the Sudanese, yup, even the Kiwis … They’ve all come, they’ve stayed and they made this joint better. And you know what? As long as they’re fair dinkum we should welcome them with open arms.
“I know what you’re thinking and you’re right. We don’t live in fairyland.
“Amongst those who come with great intentions are those who arrive with little regard for our laws, our culture and various freedoms … But we shouldn’t judge the many on these very few.
“Let’s not let fear and suspicion take over the better part of ourselves. In fact, let the way we live our lives shame the way they conduct theirs.
“So happy Australia Day, everyone, and don’t listen to the wankers who say it’s ugly to drape yourself in the Aussie flag. If you want to do it, just do it. But make sure when you do it, you do yourself, your family, the country and that flag tied around your neck proud.”
I never thought I’d say this, but… do you think Matty Johns would consider a career in politics?
What did you think of Matty’s surprise speech? Have your say in the comments below!