I hear parents asking each other, “Are you going to let him play football”? They actually whisper the question because they don’t want people to think their kid is a wus. And then they usually say something like, “I just don’t want him to wreck his knees and be crippled for life.”
Ok, that’s a valid point but football is America’s sport, it’s our game, it’s our passion. And if you don’t let your kid play when he’s young he’ll never make the team or get off the bench in Jr. High. Trust me, he’ll be the kid that runs the wrong way when they finally give him the ball, doesn’t understand a two point conversion and can’t keep score.
Sure, football can be dangerous, but it’s nothing compared to Spain’s national sport…Bullfighting. Let your kid stand in front of a 2,000 pound bull in nothing but a silky cape, suddenly that linebacker doesn’t seem so bad.
According to the Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research, cheer-leading is the most dangerous sport in America. Drop you daughter off of a second floor balcony and hope three sophmors actually catch her. Now that’s dangerous.
The national sport of Afghanistan is called Buzkashi and is kind of like polo, everyone is on horseback, but they use a dead goat with no head or legs instead of a ball. I don’t know how dangerous that is but it sounds really gross.
Would you deny your child the chance to be a Sumo Wrestler? That’s pretty dangerous but it brings honor to your family. Cliff diving in Mexico looks pretty deadly too.
My point is, when you’re thinking about football or any team sport, safety shouldn’t be you’re only consideration. When a kid is part of a team, they learn the importance of protecting team members, on and off the field. They figure out it’s not all about “them” and that one person generally can’t win a game. It takes everyone working together. When they play team sports they learn to respect or at least pay attention to coaches, even if they seem mean. And that’s an incredibly valuable lesson because someday your child will have a boss and chances are, they will be mean to them, at some point during their career. Kids have to learn to deal with that.
So, am I going to let Sandor play football? Hell yes! He’s American and I want him to know what it feels like to stand on the sidelines while the National Anthem is sung, I want him to feel the joy of winning with his team, and the heartbreak of loosing then having to take a long bus ride home.
If Sandor wants to play football, then he’ll play football and I’ll be the crazy woman screaming in the stands, thankful the quarterback is passing a football instead of a dead goat.