If you are a woman you may want to think twice about entering a Jaycar store after the owner of the consumer electronics group, Gary Johnston, appeared to support the “offensive” comments of an unidentified person at the Canterbury Bulldogs who hurled insults at a female Channel Nine reporter earlier this week.
Johnson, who has been described as a “dinosaur” who is a major sponsor of the Bulldogs, has been slammed by several women’s groups who have described his remarks as equally as offensive as those hurled at Channel Nine reporter Jayne Azzopardi on Monday.
Arriving for an interview after the Bulldogs failed to win the NRL Final up against the Melbourne Storms, an unknown person from within the club yelled out from a Window.
“THERE are some ladies here to stick their heads in your pants”;
“S … me off you dumb dog”; and
“I want to go and punch you in the face.”
24 hours later Johnson told a 2GB interviewer
“If a woman walks into some bars in Sydney, she will be ogled, she will be treated as an object and that’s the way it is. She doesn’t have to walk into those bars,” Johnston said near the end of an interview with Ben Fordham.
|Gary Johnson with Bulldogs Boss Todd Greenberg: New Ltd image Daily Telegraph.|
When asked by Fordham if he was defending the comments, Johnston said they were only in strife because of their profiles and this was all the fault of Channel 9.
He then went on to further defend the actions of the unidentified staff, who have since been identified as Bulldogs training staff, by claiming Channel 9 probably broke the law by turning up to do an interview with players the day after their loss.
He told 2GB interviewer Ben Fordham “They were not invited there. They parked themselves across the road like a peeping tom and used a highly-sensitive microphone to record conversations which they were not privy to.”
But when Fordham explained the comments actually came through an open window and were yelled towards the female journalist, Johnston continued his defence.
“OK Ben, let’s analyse this,” he said. “First of all they have no video footage of anyone doing this so they didn’t stand at the window and yell at this woman.” He then added: “Nobody seems to be focusing on the fact that technically Channel 9 probably broke the law.”
Fordham interjected saying: “What? What? Gary, are you serious? You are saying when a woman walks into a bar, so if my wife and some of her colleagues were to go out tonight and have a drink, they can expect someone to say s … me off you dumb dog?”
One woman who SmartHouse spoke to said “This is not the comments one would expect from the CEO of a retail Company. Can you image what his female staff thinks of him today? I won’t shop in one of his stores and I hope that my husband and sons will think twice about shopping in one of Jaycar’s stores”.
Earlier this year Johnston was so convinced that the Bulldogs’ first season under new coach Des Hasler would be a year of rebuilding that he agreed to a six-figure minor premiership bonus on top of his multimillion dollar sponsorship of the club.
Johnson’s comments have been described as a “bizarre defence” of bad behaviour which the Sydney Morning Herald said was the worst comments in the history of rugby league.
Bulldogs chief executive Todd Greenberg yesterday submitted a report to the ARL Commission on the incident and a decision is expected to be made quickly.