What a difference a day makes!
Former professional rugby player Israel Folau launched a GoFundMe page this week to raise money for his legal expenses after having his four-year $5 million contract with the New South Wales Waratahs canceled after he posted series of homophobic diatribes on social media in April.
Yesterday, Folau had only raised $1,300 towards his $3 million goal. Today, he’s raised more than $460,000 and counting from almost 6,000 individuals.
Some donors have used their real names when handing over their money. Others have been putting down fake names, including those of convicted terrorists.
Why so many people are rushing to aide Folau, who is already a multimillionaire, is a mystery. Then again, homophobes aren’t exactly known for being the smartest, most rational people.
According to the Australian Business Review, Folau has a $5.6 million property portfolio that includes seven different properties in and around Sydney.
The 30-year-old lives with his wife in a five bedroom, 5-acre property just outside of Sydney and drives a $500,000 Lamborghini.
Adding to the absurdity of it all is the fact that Folau has made absolutely no promises that he’s going to use the money for his legal expenses, which will likely cost far less than $3 million.
According to Josh Bornstein, a well-regarded employment lawyer from Melbourne and director of the Australia Institute, a progressive think tank, Folau’s case will probably cost closer to $300,000.
Israel Folau’s case should not cost more than 300k
— Josh Bornstein (@JoshBBornstein) June 21, 2019
The Sydney Morning Herald reports:
While Folau asks for money “in order to support my legal action”–he claims he has already spent $100,000 of his own–a disclaimer at the bottom of the page makes it clear that there does not have to be a money trail for those who stump up the cash.The disclaimer reads: “In making this contribution I acknowledge that my contributions are made freely as a gift on the basis previously affirmed and that there will be no obligations on Israel Folau to do anything for me in recognition of the gift or to apply the funds in any particular way with respect to his legal action, and that I hold no expectation to receive anything in return for my contribution.”
Of course, there’s a still a chance Folau won’t see a dime of any of the money he’s raised.
GoFundMe’s policy states that users cannot use the platform to raise funds “for the legal defense of … intolerance of any kind relating to race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, sex, gender or gender identity, or serious disabilities or diseases.”
The fundraising platform has yet to respond to any requests for comment on the matter.