Eddie & Rocky

Eddie & Rocky

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Bill to Ban Youth Football in Illinois Likely Dead

Well thank God.

A bill trying to ban tackle football in Illinois won't be called for a vote today and that makes me happy. 

Amidst this crisis of head injuries and CTE, many out there think the remedy is to ban the sport of football for youth all together.   Blanket cancellation is easy, which is why people get behind it.  Why should it not be a parent's CHOICE on whether to allow their kid to play or not?  Football does a lot of good in this world believe it or not.  It teaches tremendous life lessons like teamwork, persistence, getting back up when you are knocked down, and more.  It gives kids (like me) an opportunity to go to college when they would not be able to if not for a college scholarship. It keeps kids from being idle and allows them to be a part of something greater than themselves.  Here are a few more of my thoughts of this matter:

1.) Most of the cases of CTE and head issues that we hear about in the media are as a result of PROFESSIONAL football.  Guess what?  Your kid is probably not going to play in the NFL.  Statistics say .09% of high school players wind up getting drafted to NFL.  So stop worrying so much.  Cross the college football/NFL bridge when you get there.

2.)  With a major sport being unavailable, kids are left with nothing to do.  That can lead to childhood obesity which is a far greater problem in America.  That can lead to confidence/self-esteem issues that are a much greater problem in America.  That can lead to general idleness which is never good for a young man for it can lead to more kids experimenting with drugs, getting in trouble, you name it.  All things our society and boys in general are suffering from far more greatly today.

3.)  I often here "well they can just play another sport!"  The most available sports to play in the fall in high school are football and soccer.  Let's say you're a youth  boy whose a little on the big/hefty side.  You think that kid wants to (or is able to) run up and down a soccer field for 90 minutes straight?  No.  So if he doesn't play football he plays nothing  No chance to be a part of a team. 

The fact is every person on this Earth is different.  We are all made different.  Some kids you can hit in the head with a baseball bat and nothing happens.  Some kids can get what looks like an innocent bump on the head and suffer a concussion.  We cannot make blanket policies and think they will solve an issue, especially this one.  A parent must look at his kid, watch his development and act accordingly.

I'm not saying your kid should play youth football.  I'm shouldn't saying he shouldn't play youth football. I still haven't decided what I'm going to do with my son who is now four years old.  But let's at least have the choice.  From there, it's up to you.

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