After a week of crowdsourcing funds for his legal fight against Rugby Australia and general shit-stirring, Israel Folau’s controversial GoFundMe page just got the boot. And it was sent straight between the posts for a goal.
GoFundMe released a statement on Monday saying that after a “routine period of evaluation, we have concluded that this campaign violates our terms of service.”
“As a company, we are absolutely committed to the fight for equality for LGBTIQ+ people and fostering an environment of inclusivity. While we welcome GoFundMes engaging in diverse civil debate, we do not tolerate the promotion of discrimination or exclusion,” GoFundMe Australia regional manager Nicola Britton said.
Before being shut down this morning, the self-proclaimed “legal action fund” had received over $760,000 in donations from more than 9800 Australians, toward its $3 million goal. The money was to be used in Folau’s legal challenge against Rugby Australia for sacking him after a series of homophobic social media posts – a.k.a. to help him in the “fight of [his] life”.
YOU are in a fight that YOU chose to be in after YOU broke the terms of YOUR contract, the kids below are in a fight they NEVER wanted to be in & yet YOU think YOU deserve donations more than they do??!!
— Drew Mitchell (@drew_mitchell) June 21, 2019
GoFundMe’s statement emphasised their commitment to the fight for equality and “fostering an environment of inclusivity,” which, very clearly Folau’s petition was in breach of.
After getting their hands on footage of Folau making a sermon during his lcal church service, in which he denigrated LGBTIQ youth and the government’s enabling of what “the devil is trying to instil” in children social media was ready to lay some big tackles.
When the GoFundMe was first uploaded, there was a serious scrum led by Change.org and the general Internet to take it down. And now, with the page pulled from the field, Folau’s opposition (like, 90% of the Internet) has scored a try, kicked the conversion, and they’re looking like they might actually win this thing.
The Internet says “yass queen!” well, the majority of them.
A lot of people are bracing themselves for his crowdsourcing effort for legal action against GoFundMe.
I think Izzy should also sue GoFundMe. Donations, anyone ?
— Mike Carlton (@MikeCarlton01) June 24, 2019
Any moment now, Israel Folau is going to set up a Paypal account asking for donations to sue GoFundMe.
— Maxine Beneba Clarke (@slamup) June 24, 2019
How else could he possibly get the money? Oh yeah…
Go Fund yo’self. What a great, ethical decision @gofundme has made in relation to #Folau
Maybe he can use some of his $4M contract or one of his houses to fund his own battle for discrimination, in the name of the Father.
— Emma Husar (@emmahusarmp) June 24, 2019
The satire almost writes itself.
Israel Folau Misses Out On Another $3M By Once Again Not Reading The Terms And Conditions: https://t.co/hQssY0juf0 pic.twitter.com/Xqz9f4K8zf
— The Betoota Advocate (@BetootaAdvocate) June 24, 2019
Little known fact, Jesus was the first persecuted Christian to hold a GoFundMe fundraiser. Accounts differ on where the money actually went. #folau #izzy #gofundme pic.twitter.com/JoMSqN2WAA
— 💧ɈⱯƧǾȠ ⱤƟṦƮⱭƝŦ🌏 (@jrostant) June 21, 2019
Dramatic irony or the Lord’s work?
GoFundMe gets cancelled and rainbow appears over Sydney — COINCIDENCE or DIVINE INTERVENTION? pic.twitter.com/YyOcyNtGNO
— Dan Ilic (@danilic) June 24, 2019
But some are on Folau’s side…
Absolutey distgusting that freedom of religion and expression is being censored. #gofundme #IsraelFolau https://t.co/vO3dV6sFjp
— Shayne (@ShayneDimmer) June 24, 2019
Like One Nation Senator Mark Latham saying there’s “divisive identity politics on public agenda”
When the Left put divisive identity politics on public agenda, it was always going to lead to a hierarchy of identities.
The Folau matter shows the rankings:
Homosexuality far more important than Islander skin colour.
The rights of Islam also ahead of the rights of Christianity.
— Real Mark Latham (@RealMarkLatham) June 24, 2019
The tolerance jihadis won’t be satisfied until they destroy Israel Folau, his wife, his parents, their church and every one of his supporters. They want Folau to be a lesson to all Christians and people of faith: keep your religion in the closet. Irony of all ironies. https://t.co/zPfVfQP50f
— Miranda Devine (@mirandadevine) June 24, 2019
Some on his side didn’t seem to understand that he actually breached contract (twice), and that this is just policy, pal.
@gofundme it upsets me to hear that Israel Folau page has been pulled down. I am not religious, support gay rights and free speech (unless inciting violence). Censoring speech can never be tolerated in a western society.
— Melissa Perrow (@MelissaPerrow) June 24, 2019
Anyone dense enough to think that the @gofundme decision is ‘religious discrimination’ needs to have a think about what that means.
The decision has nothing to do with the fact that @IzzyFolau is a religious person.
The issue is that hate-speech is not tolerated by the website.
— Shmick (@_shmick) June 24, 2019
Can we look to the bigger issues, please?
Like the fact the page was allowed to exist in the first place? Or that people actually have to use GoFundMe to pay for medical treatments. That’s pretty cooked if you ask me.
Can we agree that GoFundMe’s ‘routine period of evaluation’ re terms and conditions might be improved by not commencing a campaign until completed. pic.twitter.com/RClevanVee
— faaaarkme (@faaaarkme) June 24, 2019
Outrageous than anyone has to use GoFundMe to pay for medical bills. Maybe we should be talking about that, hey.
— Jeff Sparrow (@Jeff_Sparrow) June 24, 2019
Is GoFundMe’s decision to shut down Israel Falou’s page going to further strengthen his argument that he’s a persecuted minority, and therefore entrench his views?
— Shalailah Medhora (@shalailah) June 24, 2019
Image Sources: FoxSports