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Should youth football be banned?
The number of concussions in youth football has prompted a school board in New Hampshire to consider a ban of the sport.
October 15th, 2012
12:55 PM ET

Should youth football be banned?

By Jim Roope, CNN

(CNN) – The growing number of concussions in football has prompted a proposal to ban high school football in Dover, New Hampshire.

Dr. Paul Butler, a retired surgeon and Dover school board, member said he’s concerned about the repeated head trauma, both detected and undetected, that some younger football players suffer.

[1:29] “Football is the only game we have right now, in my opinion, that uses the head as a battering ram repeatedly during a given game or a given practice session.”

He said, since 2002, studies on the long-term effects of concussions suggest football is simply too violent a sport, especially for kids.

Would youth football survive a tackling ban?

Fifteen-year-old high school sophomore linebacker James Aguirre suffered a severe concussion during tackling drills last spring:

[1:01] “I was told that one eye was looking at one direction and the one was looking in another direction.”

Concussions are plaguing the pros too.  It's currently one of the most hotly-discussed topics in the NFL.

According to the NFL Concussion Report, operated by the independently-run “Concussion Blog,” there have been 51 concussions so far in 2012's six-week-old NFL-season.

Editor's Note: Listen to the complete story above and join the conversation below.

soundoff (374 Responses)
  1. MCR

    They won't have to ban it soon enough. The last dinner party I was at one of the main topics was the "shockingly irresponsible" parents that let their kids play football given the current knowledge. Unless they do something radical, this sport be driven out by peer pressure very quickly. I still remember when it was OK to drink and drive and OK to smoke in a family restaurant filled with kids. A sport that breeds brain injury and promotes obesity? That's dead by the end of the decade.

    October 16, 2012 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Oh Good Grief

    CDC has collected statistics on traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), which are mostly concussion, for a number of years. That data and the results from a number of epidemiology studies help put the risk from football for HS players in perspective.

    CDC used data from emergency rooms and hospitalizations over the period of 2001-2009. From their data the average annual number of TBI's for the age 15-19 group is 186,089 TBI's. The average number related to sports and recreational injuries for that same group is 61,851 or about 33% of the TBI's. The remaining 2/3rds of TBI's come from non-sports related activities, with motor vehicle accidents standing out. Of the sports related TBI's 13,667 were from football, which is the highest sport activity incidence - that's 22% ff the total sports related TBI's and 7% of the total TBI's for the 15-19 age group. In the age 15-19 group TBI's accounted for 7.0% of all sports and recreation related injuries.

    Several epidemiology studies have used survey approaches that included player histories, athletic trainers, coaches and athletic coordinators in an effort to determine the concussion injury rate for various HS sports. While the rate numbers vary quite a bit, one consistency is that football is at the top. Using the football as a baseline within each of the studies, then calculating a relative incident rate for the other sports included, and then averaging across the studies by sport where it was included in more than one study, you get the following comparative incident rates rates of concussion, expressed as a percentage of the rate for football, with football being 100%:

    Boy's ice hockey 84%
    Boy's lacrosse 63%
    Girl's soccer 57%
    Girl's lacrosse 55%
    Boy's soccer 49%
    Girl's basketball 43%
    Girls track 43%
    Girl's field hockey 34%
    Wrestling 33%
    Boy's track 31%
    Girl's softball 25%
    Cheerleading 25%
    Boy's basketball 24%
    Softball 23%

    Know the facts. Parents should make an informed decision, not a fearful school board.

    October 16, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      "Parents should make an informed decision, not a fearful school board."

      When I was 14 my parents had to choose a checkbox for whether I could smoke or not. In those days that was up to parents, not a "fearful schoolboard".

      October 16, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Willy

    LOL...always something. If you want to make football safer, remove all the safety gear. Give them the same gear as rugby players and let the real men play. See how many tackle with the head leading then. The safer we make sports with equipment the more dangerous it becomes. Heck, strip down and play it in the buff.

    October 16, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      There's good evidence removing the gear works. It may be the only way to save football, so I'd recommend it be tried.

      October 16, 2012 at 9:44 pm | Report abuse |
  4. GatorDude

    Fine! fine! But, football is a great substitute for war. If we don't have football, we'll have to have more wars. If you look at all the places around the world that have wars, you'll notice they all lack one thing: American football. Look around the world at places like Chechnya, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Lebanon, Syria, and Darfur. They don't have American football so they have to go shoot each other every weekend over religion.

    October 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      You could make a similar list for Ireland, Australia and all the other countries that haven't been in wars. Only one country plays this sport, so you can't go looking for trends.

      October 16, 2012 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Geek

      What were you thinking when you wrote that (gatordude) that comment made me want to laugh. One, american football caused many fights in america (team's fans rivaling against each other in the form of physical contact), plus there are so many hate crimes in this country. Second, other countries happen to have other sport like cricket, rugby, and futsal. Third, I'm 13 and trying to find useful information regarding disagreement in American society and your comment blew my mind.

      October 17, 2012 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  5. racer3114

    Let me start off by saying that my son's football coach would be flipping out on one of his kids tackling with head down like a spear and would be benching him if that continued... It is a coaches job to make sure they are taking whatever steps they can to reduce chance of injury. But bottom line in any sport injury can happen...

    I am all for the information being put out there but it is up to the parents and the kids if they want to play the sport... Ultimately it is up to the partents to decide if they don't want to risk the injury then they need to stand up to THEIR kids and let them know they can't play for what ever the reason is... It is not their job as parents to make it so that no one else can do a sport they love.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Cranston Snort

    If they do ban football, the school should expect a significant drop in enrollment. Seen it happen before. Will be great for the neigboring schools.

    October 16, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  7. crabman

    lets all just sit around the camp fire and sing and chant -- L O L

    October 16, 2012 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Willy

      sure crabman...great idea. One little snap crackle pop and my poor johnny could be the recipient of a spark. No thanks. Ohhh...I better check the box of Rice Krispies to make sure those are safe too.

      October 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  8. sportmom

    My son doesn't play football. But my daughters all play volleyball. They have played against teams where every girl is wearing at least one ankle or knee brace. I watched one of our 11yo's teammates break her ankle in a game this past weekend and a girl on my older daughter's team sprained hers a few days before that. In that same game, an opposing team player hurt her knee pretty badly as her knee pad had slid down as she skid across the floor into a doorjam going after a ball. Shall we ban volleyball because there are too many injuries?

    October 16, 2012 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • GKLa

      Its a different kind of injury. Ive never heard of someone developing memory loss or dementia due to an ankle injury, have you?
      As an athlete who has had concussions, I understand their affects and would rather have an ankle injury over a concussion.
      Dont get me wrong because I love football but parents do need think about this issue before enrolling their children in this violent sport.

      October 16, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
      • racer3114@yahoo.com

        I understand it is two different types of injury however they do have a long term affect... Arthritus can set into the knees and ankle injuries but still don't think it is up to someone else to say they can't do a sport they love.

        October 16, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
        • sportmom

          I get the brain trauma. Football doesn't monopolize that type of injury. You can get your 'bell rung' in volleyball and basketball as well, especially when falling to the floor when fracturing a bone in your ankle or tearing your ACL or meniscus. I have personal experience in living with someone with TBI from recurring concussions.

          October 16, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • sportmom reply

      You're obviously an ignorant fool that doesn't do any research, football is one of the few sports like boxing where the opponent intentionally tries to hurt the opposing athlete. Brain trauma is far more deadly than hairline fractures in the extremities. If you Americans weren't so focused on the popularity of football, and more focused on the health of the children, then the US would be a better place.

      October 16, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
      • racer3114

        To make a statement that football is a sport like boxing where the intention is to hurt someone. Sounds like something that an "ignorant fool" would say... Yes there are people out there in the sport that are out to hurt someone. However that doesn't mean that is the intention of the sport. That is like saying that some of the jerks in soccer that go out there to hurt someone which I have seen (even hear parents tell their kid to do at a youth level.)

        As far as being focused on health... I should what make my kids stay inside all day playing video games and watching TV instead of being out playing sports and running around?

        It is like everything else the "bad apples" are the stories you hear thus the whole sport must be that way. I personally would say that is an ignorant way to look at it.

        October 16, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
        • Oh Good Grief

          Agreed! Properly played, football is not intended at hurting the opponent any more than ice hockey, lacrosse or soccer. But because of the contact nature injuries do occur, and because of the power aspect of football some of those will be significant and include concussions. Boxing is a different matter entirely.

          October 16, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
      • cristina vlad

        I totally agree with you! There are so many other beautiful sports out there, and I don't understand the purpose of box, football, or any crazy violent "sports". Why do you want to hit somebody and call it a sport?????

        October 16, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      When you've taken care of someone with dementia – and I mean late stage, needing all their needs attended to – get back to me about how this is just another injury. Brain injuries bring on alzheimer's years early, and it's the most godawful condition you'll ever meet. It's tear your heart out, bring misery to a family, and likely as not bankrupt you. This is not a damaged ankle.

      October 16, 2012 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Darwin

    BRING BACK LAWN DARTS!!!

    October 16, 2012 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  10. Oh Good Grief

    Really?

    Yes, my conclusions are based on real, reported statistics from very credible sources. However, the data on sorts-related concussions at the scholastic level is highly varied. It depends upon how the data was collected. The previous general numbers I hastily cited were from CDC statistics collected from emergency room cases. The problem with that is that is know that only a fraction of the possible or indicated concussions proceed to an ER. Some estimates are as little as 10%.

    In the interest of a broader view, there are a number of published reports on the epidemiology of sports related concussions in the epidemiology and sport medicine literature. One of those that reports a higher incidence rate for HS football was published January 27 this year in Journal of American Sports Medicine by Marar, et al, titled "Epidemiology of Concussions Among United States High School Athletes in 20 Sports". It is publicly available for free.

    That study reports the rate of concussions for 20 sports by rate per 10,000 Athlete Exposures (AEs). An athlete exposure is one athlete participating in either a practice session or a game. For HS football the number was 6.4 per 10,000 AE's. That translates to 1562 AE's per concussion. A typical HS preseason and season provides for 10 AE's in preseason and 40 AE's during a following 10-week season for each athlete if they play in every game and participate in every practice session. For a total of 50 AE's per year, and 1562 AE's per concussion, the indicated result is 1 concussion per 31.25 HS football players annually. Taken over a 4-year "career", that can be translated to 1 per 7.8 players if they play all session for 4 years.

    From the same study some comparable rates for other HS sports that were examined:
    Football 6.4, Boy's ice hockey 5.4, Boy's lacrosse 4.0, Girl's lacrosse 3.5 Girl's soccer 3.4, Boy's wrestling 2.2, Girl's field hockey 2.2, Girl's basketball 2.1, Boy's basketball 1.6, Girl's softball 1.6, Cheerleading 1.4.

    Other studies with similar results but reporting differing rates are well available. Another good one is titled "Incidence and Risk Factors for Concussion in High School Athletes, North Carolina, 1996–1999", Schulz, et al, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology in 2004.

    October 16, 2012 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Oh Good Grief

      @Really

      For completeness, here are a few selected comparable incident rates for concussions from the NC study cited above (adjusted by a factor of 0.1 as the NC study reports in concussions per 100,000 AE's:
      Football 3.3; Boys soccer 2.3; Girl's basketball 1.7; Girl's track 1.4; Girl's soccer 1.3; Baseball 1.2; Boy's basketball 1.0; Softball 1.0; Boy's track 1.0; Cheerleading 0.9.

      The previously cited CDC report (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report , October 7, 2011) showed the following "Estimated annual number of emergency department visits for all nonfatal injuries and nonfatal traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) related to sports and recreation activities among persons aged ≤19 years, by type of activity" (Table 2, top ten only):
      Bicycling 26,212; Football 25,376; Playground 16,706; Soccer 10,436; Baseball 9,634; Other 9,059; All-terrain vehicle riding 6,337; Skateboarding 6,004; Swimming 4,557.

      The point is to understand the relative risk and then to make an informed decision based upon acceptable risk. That should be a decision of informed parents, based on understanding of the real risks and not fear by some school board..

      October 16, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  11. Epidi

    #74 in the pic appears to need some medicated powder in his cup lol.

    October 16, 2012 at 4:22 am | Report abuse |
  12. Epidi

    Noooo! Sports – particularly football was just the outlet my son needed in school. He was right up there on the front line with the big boys & took his hits – for sure. But if not for the sports programs, I don't think he would have kept enough interest to keep going to school & trying to keep his grades up. He had a no nonsense coach – don't make the grades – don't play. Unfortunately – there's not enough of these coaches out there – to most – it's all about the game & that's it.

    October 16, 2012 at 4:21 am | Report abuse |
  13. Oh Good Grief

    I assume that because HS is singled out. Dr. Butler is referring to those in the 15-19 years age group. Here are some facts, Dr. Butler:

    The risk of concussion from football increases as the playing level increases from Intermediate/Jr. HS to HS to College to Pro. If you find the risk is unacceptable for HS, then it must be increasingly unacceptable at the college level.

    The primary risk for concussion in the age 15-19 group is NOT sports related,as it is in younger groups (ages 6-14), it comes from motor vehicle accidents. If you find the risk of concussion from football in HS players unacceptable, then you must also find operating motor vehicles by those in that age group also unacceptable.

    Similarly, if you find the risk of a concussion from football for HS players unacceptable, then you must also find that playground activities for those age 6-10 poses an unacceptable risk for concussion.

    Let's get a grip on relative risk and make rational decisions about acceptable risk rather than play the game of fear.

    October 15, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Really?

      The American Journal of Public Health states that of the 1.5 million participants in high school football, each year 250,000 of the suffer from at least one concussion. Do one in six grade schoolers get a concussion every year on the play ground? I went to grade school and knew a lot of grade schoolers. I'm not saying it never happened, but I never heard of anyone getting one.

      The Sports Concussion Institute estimates that pro football players receive 900 to 1500 blows to the head per year. High school players must receive that same order of magnitude. I may have received four or five blows to the head in elementary school. How are you coming up with these comparisons?

      And of course the doctor mentioned in the story thinks football at the college and pro levels is more dangerous, but he not on the board of directors for either of those entities. I can understand you liking football and thinking the risks are acceptable but I don't think your argument is rooted in statistical fact.

      October 16, 2012 at 4:34 am | Report abuse |
      • Oh Good Grief

        The statistics are well published. Many of them are available from CDC (see their website on the subject), and the reference articles they cite. From there it is easy.

        Does football pose a risk? Yes, absolutely. It is one of the highest risk sports activities for concussion. The question is how does that risk compare to other sports and other activities that many believe or think safe? Then, armed with that information make a decision if that risk is acceptable. This is where parents should be informed and actively involved, instead of a school board supplanting parental involvement.

        FYI – the average number of reported concussions annually for HS basketball and soccer players annually is ~ 61% of those for HS football players. Read the professional literature.

        October 16, 2012 at 7:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Mel

      well said

      October 16, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
  14. payton

    what if a high school player is dumb but is the football team star and you ban football? his life will be screwed up.you guys know you can earn a football scholarship right?and if you ban football he cant rely on grades or his best sport what does he do then? his family has to pay all the colege fees with no help

    October 15, 2012 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      How about just concentrating on your grades in the first place... .01% of HS athletes actually recieve full rides, if not less. You have a MUCH better chance of receiving scholarships with strong grades, even a B average. There are far too many athletes out there anyway that rely on sports to get into college, do nothing but sports/party in college, and leave college 5 years later with a few good games, 10 of thousands of dollars in debt, and no job. Do your homework kid;)

      October 15, 2012 at 11:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mel

      Thank you!

      October 16, 2012 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      The saddest thing I remember from grad school (at an internationally known state university) was working as a TA and finding one of my football players was functionally illiterate. He couldn’t write a single clear sentence. I don’t know what strings were pulled to get him there, but the whole thing was a farce. This kid was failing all his classes and was never going to graduate.

      October 16, 2012 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
  15. payton

    i play football and i think its stupid you want to ban football.you get a concusion you go to the doctor take a few days off get up dust it off and get in there and play!you get another take a few more days off and do the same thing.

    October 15, 2012 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • GKLa

      spoken like someone who does not understand their long term effects

      October 16, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  16. James

    12:55 PM ET

    12:55 PM ET

    Should youth football be banned?–Probably not a bad idea–Give them a book to read–Noval idea–

    October 15, 2012 at 9:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stuart

      Someone should give you a book to read, specifically a dictionary turned to the N-section containing "novel."

      October 15, 2012 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
      • Ryan

        hahaha, the guy who wants people to read books spells it "noval"......too great lolololol

        October 15, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
  17. pete

    Any self-respecting kid, like myself, from NH wouldn't play football anyway. Hockey MF!!

    October 15, 2012 at 9:24 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Ryan

    That someone would suggest a ban on football is appalling. And even more appalling in the state of New Hampshire. I could sit here and make the argument for cars killing people and causing concussions too, and weapons killing a staggering number of people worldwide EVERY year!!! If you don't want you're child to play football, don't let him play football! It's really that simple. Do NOT start infringing on the opportunities of other people in your community because some kids get concussions. I played football through peewee, hs, and college, and never suffered a (known) concussion. It doesn't happen to everyone.....just like not everyone gets killed in a car wreck. This guy, while a brain surgeon or whatever, is embarrassing.

    October 15, 2012 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      Can you think of an alternative to cars that will keep our economy afloat? An alternative to weapons that will keep nations from invasion? On the other hand, we have plenty of alternatives to football which carry far lower risks of brain damage.

      October 16, 2012 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Elieen

    I attended a southern NH high school that did not have a football team as it was too dangerous (in the 80s). We were allowed a hockey team, and a golf team. Now let's talk about the drug issues that were swept under the rug, an infant left to die of exposure, and an unsolved murder that all occurred in "Our Town" during this time.

    October 15, 2012 at 6:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • IslandAtheist

      Did the schools have drug and tanning teams?

      October 15, 2012 at 7:00 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Allen

    The answer for most people when something is dangerous is to ban said dangerous activity, especially when it isn't a necessity and considered "a fun activity." However, banning recreational football doesn't solve the problem. The problem is that kids aren't being taught how to tackle correctly or run correctly.

    If you're taught over and over again that 2 + 2 = 5 and go out in the real world practicing that without having someone correct you, we are in the same situation. Granted, teaching the correct form and way to play football won't mean that concussions will become non-existent. However, it will help significantly. Banning it is a gut reaction and doesn't solve the problem. It just means kids go longer and longer without learning how to properly tackle and how not playing correctly can affect their brain.

    October 15, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Doug

    I played on a State championship HS team for coaches that won multiple state titles, and they never taught to tackle with the crown of the helmet down. Its just poor technique and bad football #1. You can't tackle what you can't see. When the head goes down, the back humps upward, and all power is lost. Keep the base low and powerful with the head up, arms wrapped, and driving through with a strong base is what I look for in a good tackle. I am in my late 20's now and volunteered for the first time to coach 7th grade football. It is amazing to see that the majority of coaches do NOT know proper form tackling technique. It is not surprising to see such poor tackling at the youth, HS, college, and even NFL level. If you are going to coach, learn the game, first to keep all players safe, and secondly to develop good football players.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      With that said, because of the fact that so many youth football coaches teach the fundamentals poorly (or not at all), personally when I have kids I'd rather not have them play. I see so many kids that would be better suited playing soccer until 7th or 8th grade, developing some actual athleticism rather than developing this false bravado just because they have the pads on. (ie Jarret Payton). I new many athletes that did not put the pads on until high school, but were very good athletes coming in, willing to work hard and made themselves into all-state type players.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  22. don

    I'm sorry, who gave anyone the authority to do so?

    October 15, 2012 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Ty

    Ban youth league football... where I was raised we didnt have youth football... I am still alive. I still care about sports, my life wont end if we ban youth league football. I didnt have high school football at the school I went to, I was pissed off but I lived through it. If banned high school football as well it wouldnt be a problem. If I can live through it the rest of America can too.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • SoCal Official

      It is apparent why you wouldn’t care if football was banned at all levels. These sports are ways for young men to receive degrees as well as financial stability. Of course you probably may be doing well in life which is great, but remember everyone is not afforded the same opportunities as others. Don’t punish a child because others don’t teach them what’s wrong or right on the field.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      Over 95% of the world's population lives in places without youth football (or at least "youth American football").

      October 16, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Danny Kenck

    If players are being taught to use their head as a battering ram then they are being taught incorrectly. So it is incorrect for Dr. Butler to state that proper football uses the head as a battering ram. It is also incorrect to state that football is the only sport that does. Soccer players lead with their head as well often during a game and face the same concussion risks. All sports from football, soccer, basketball, hockey etc. face a concussion risk. And all face the risk of a concussion going undetected.

    Regarding football, coaches should be trained to teach players how to block and tackle. USA Football has a tackling and level of contact progression on their website. Pop Warner has new guidelines for the level of contact for practices. These are good places for coaches to start.

    Regarding a ban of football. This will not address the problem among other sports. If Dr. Butler and the rest of the board are interested in making legislation that is helpful they should look at the Lystedt Law that we have here in Washington State. Many other states have taken the lead to adopt similar legislation that requires concussion and awareness training for coaches and mandates that a participant is removed from play until cleared to return by a medical expert.

    As far as

    October 15, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • JL

      Well said sir.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Krisagi

    Yup lets ban youth sports the neighborhood gangs need more people and jails need more people arrested for drug use and violence. Its youth sports like football and baseball that keep kids from going to jail. also its sports like football that help kids who cant afford college to get scholarships to go to college so they can get better jobs than flipping burgers at the local Jack in the Crack

    October 15, 2012 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • HeyZeus

      Well stated. Taught Properly, the risks can be minimized. But take away these activities, we'll see gangs, drugs, pregnancies all surge.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  26. SoCal Official

    I am an official in San Diego, Ca and I don't agree with banning little league football programs. I understand football is a brutal sport, but its also a level of learning. These kids learn the fundamentals at a young age so they can utilize them as they progress to the next level. Thses are younger and smaller players making mistakes at the lower level. If we dont allow them to make these mistakes we will have bigger, faster and stronger kids making bigger mistakes. Imgine the injury toll we will have at the high school level if they don't know how to play properly? I feel we should have tackling clinics at the lower levels and ensure it is mandatory for coaches, players and parents attend them. All sports come with big risk. If you don't want your child to risk injuries don't put them on the field.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
  27. JH

    Wow are you serious?! Football teaches young boys to not give up when it gets tough and to work as a team. It builds character and they want to ban youth football because of concussions?! You know you can get a concussion by tripping over your own feet and hitting your head on the ground. This world has gone to hell and our leaders of this country who come up with these laws and banning youth football is rediculous. What are you going to do next? Is the police going to start giving kids a ticket for not wearing their helmet while riding their bike on a side walk? This country is becoming less free everyday and it's every day citizens that allow it.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Stacy

    Tag is banned in schools? Good grief.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Richard Right

    Life is inherently dangerous. Those who leave their homes face numerous dangers. Proper safety equipment on the field is necessary for all players but let's not reduce the boys to playing girls sports.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • weml

      Is this a response or a plea for mercy

      October 15, 2012 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • pattysboi

      Richard, are you aware that a lot of youth football does NOT require players to wear athletic cups? My nephew's mom wasn't, and we bought him one. My wife asked her sister "Um, you DO want grandchildren someday, don't you?". He now doesn't go to practice OR a game without wearing it.

      Oh, and "girls sports?" How sexist can you get? Girls play lacrosse, rugby, football, soccer, baseball, basketball, volleyball, water polo, swimming, gymnastics, etc. Get a clue, and grow UP.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      I've seen plenty of female teenagers that would beat up on some of the pudgers that roll around youth football fields... Just because you've got the pads on does not make you tough... or an athlete.

      October 15, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Mark

    Football teaches a lot of great lessons. Teamwork, for example. A team may have a true star at QB, but without a solid offensive line that works together to hold him up, he won't play that well since he'll be scrambling at all times to avoid sacks. My girlfriend, who was never a football fan before meeting me, has been seeing this and really appreciates the teamwork and response to adversity that the game teaches.
    Another lesson ... proper tackling form. There is no need to hit a dude as hard as you can to tackle him. A small guy can make a good solid tackle with good form. Similarly there is no need to ever use your helmet as a way to break through a tackle. A well timed move or a stiff arm can get the same effect without the injury to the head.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  31. d

    I hurt my head in a car crash when I was a kid. My mom was driving. Ban cars and put my mom in jail for child neglect.
    I tripped over my cat and banged my head when I was a teenager. Ban cats and walls cause they hurt and cause injury.
    I crammed for finals in college and got a headache. Ban studying cause it hurt my head.
    My wife nags me sometimes and it causes me to stress and makes my head hurt. Ban women.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • jojo

      There's no way you have a wife. Oh, you're referring to your hand as "your wife."

      October 15, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • DZA

      "Ban women?" No. No. No. Ban then from [i]nagging.[/i]
      Otherwise, hilarious post!

      October 15, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack Kieser

      Ok, genius. The difference is that a car accident IS AN ACCIDENT. You're not SUPPOSED to be in those, thus the injuries you get from them are not the "fault" of anyone or anything, even though people and things can be the cause of them (obviously, this is not the case when the driver is neglegent).

      In football, you're injured and get concussions IF YOU DO THINGS CORRECTLY. If you play the game RIGHT (if not at all), you get concussions.

      That's the difference. But, you'd know that if you didn't suffer head trauma.

      October 15, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  32. cwgmpls

    Youth football should be banned because it teaches boys and their parents to be jerks. I've had my son in football for three years; I know. I'm even becoming a jerk myself!

    October 15, 2012 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • ACE

      I agree! your a jerk.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Lindsy

    I cant wait until the time comes when in 50 years after a generation of over-protecting our kids and some muslim extreamist country starts to invade and all we will be able to say is "thats not fair" and "dont shoot at me it could hurt."

    October 15, 2012 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • jojo

      Don't worry... hopefully you'll be dead

      October 15, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • d

      It think we are already seeing the results of the trophy for participation affect in college students now. It's only going to get worse.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Bill the Cat

    Kids get killed by line drives in baseball, some are sterilized by hits to the groin in soccer, concussions in volleyball and hockey, internal trauma in karate competitions, enlarged hearts during basketball, and the list goes on...

    October 15, 2012 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  35. mike hunt

    I fell off my bike once when i was 10 and got a concussion. Should bike riding be banned?

    October 15, 2012 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • cwgmpls

      No, just riding without a helmet on.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
      • mike hunt

        and are not these football players wearing a helmet??

        October 15, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  36. lindaluttrell

    If this level of football is banned...what then for high school, college and ultimately, the pros??? Better equipment and stricter rules regarding tackling can make the game safer for everyone.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  37. history bear

    Yup, let's keep sissyfing america. Yes Football is dangerous. Life is dangerous. Enforce the teaching of proper technique, improve equipment, but don't ban it. Without adventure, physical challanges and opportunties to test yourself out and grow youth will grow up to be unable to handle the challanges of the world.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill the Cat

      Exactly. And they wonder why boys are not growing up to be men these days...

      October 15, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • jojo

        Dude, were you molested as a child? thought so.

        October 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • Charlie the Dog

        Boys aren't growing up to be men because of dads like you...not because they played or didn't play football.

        October 15, 2012 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  38. ActiveParent

    My kids = no football (most other sports are ok). Why? Kids can't make informed decisions. An 8 year old certainly can't understand the risks and consequences associated with one sport versus another. That is why kids have "parents", to protect and guide them to a point in life when they can make informed decisions on their own. Until they are in college (and sometime beyond) they believe themselves invincible.

    A grown man (or women) can make their own decisions. So, if you are a grown adult, put on the pads and have fun playing football, heck, invite your kids to the watch you play from the stands.

    October 15, 2012 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • history bear

      Glad you are an active parent. Everyone should be. But what is right for you and yours isn't necessairly right for me and mine. Do your thing and keep you nose out of mine.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
      • jojo

        Problem is, you don't have kids because that would mean you would need to have sex with someone besides your hand.

        October 15, 2012 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Ginny

    If you don't want your child to play, then don't sign him up...It's pretty easy. Don't ban it for the others that want to play. Sign him up for choir or cheerleading. Oh wait, you should ban those too-he might get a sore throat or pull a groin...

    October 15, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Unistudent

    Uh if people want to play a sport, and us that played football knew most of the risks, then why do other people care what happens to us. We made a decision to do something we enjoyed. People of this awesome country need to learn to get and keep their nose out of other people's business. Don't want your kid to play? Then be the bad guy and don't let them, but don't ruin it for everyone so you don't look like the bad guy to your kid.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ginny

      I totally agree with you. Unfortunately, it's people like this that want to get in everyone's business, which is ruining this country...

      October 15, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Harvesting

      Until I have to pay for your Healthcare when you get old. If your stupid decisions do not effect me then I do not care, unfortunately these do.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • MCR

      We care because when you have early onset dementia in your late 50s or early 60s we're going to be paying for the extended stay in a state nursing home.

      October 16, 2012 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
  41. t3chn0ph0b3

    Banning the sport in middle and high school would push recruiting abroad. This may actually happen. Get ready to watch the new Patriots quarterback Dimitri Gohzny throw against the Green Bay Packer's unstopable Gordo "The Moustache" Czernikov.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • jojo

      Fine by me

      October 15, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Rod

    I played Texas high school football in the 80's and 90's for four years. Went through 2-a-days in the summer, played opposing defense so our varsity could pummel us when we were Junior Varsity and ran into another player no less than 20 times a day as a receiver. We had tough coaches that didn't buy into the "everyone is a winner" philosophy. I played until I threw up and kept playing.

    In all that time, with all that passion and pressure to play hard, I never got injured. Not one conussion, broken bone or knocked unconcious. In 40 football games, I saw one concussion from a showboat tackle, and that player was ejected. The coaches taught us how to hit and take a hit, the refs kept us fair. Start holding the PLAYERS acocuntable for their actions by ejecting them or benching them. The trend now seems to be to make a spectacle of a tackle, not halt forward progress.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  43. BuckUpUS

    Oh yes. Let's ban climbing in trees and skateboarding. Or the game of tag. All to dangerous for today's youth's. Replace them with video games. They are much safer and your kids will be much paler.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rod

      Tag is already banned in my kids' elementary school. Physical contact is not allowed at all. Red Rover, Tag and Hide and Seek all banned.

      October 15, 2012 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
      • Beth

        I'd say that's unbelievable but I totally believe it. It just amazes me. I agree with the person who said if you dont want your kid at risk, then dont sign him up. You wont need to ban it if there arent enough players to play. And I do have children so I guess my comment isnt moot. If my boys wanted to play, I'd let them.

        October 15, 2012 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
        • jojo

          well, it's a good think you're kids are gay boys and don't want to play then isn't it

          October 15, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gilchrist

      Lots of risky sports out there. All but golf (probably not really a sport) and table tennis come with risks. But football is out there on the edge of that risk. Makes it an easy call for a parent. This may make it harder to find a good defense for my fantasy team 20 years from now – but not many points lost there each week.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
      • Charlie the Dog

        Hey Hey Hey, don't go bustin on the Golf...there are a lot of great football players who play golf as well!!!

        October 15, 2012 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      It would seem your implication here is that children's sports are no more dangerous than in years past. If so, you missed the point. I played like a maniac when I was a kid and freely admit I broke a couple of bones (mine and others) but today's "play" is very different and the pressures are different. If you have a child playing, you know what I am talking about.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Bailey

    OK, if you are not a parent or don't have a child then your comment is moot because you don't have a child to be concerned of specially their future and the medical bills you are willing to put up to have your child get treated for Dementia.

    Any sports that is prone to have concussion should be ban or evaluated closely specially for kids whose brain still developing.

    And for parents who doesn't care about their kids future/health then disregard my statement.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • DTX

      I am so sick of these people that want to ban everything because they are afraid that their little johnny might get hurt, but he should be able to play a non aggressive version, so everyone should. I am a parent of a now 6'6 290# high school football player. He started full contact play at age 5 and has loved every minute of it. Sure, he got his bumps and bruises and that is just part of it. If you want to bubble wrap your baby, go ahead. If not, wear a condom next time, so the rest of us dont have to listen to this crap. Sit back and eat your Obama Carrot lunch while the rest eat a couple of cheeseburgers / fries and wipe off the sweat,dirt and blood. So H3LL NO it does not need to change.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Michael

      People like you are the ones who should NOT have children. Thanks for attempting to raise weak minded, unheathy, socially inept person for society to have to support in the later years. I hope your basement is nice and cozy for your 35 yr old son or daughter...

      October 15, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
      • DTX

        you are clueless. Weak minded would not be someone that takes college classes as a JR, Honor Roll student, does not have an ounce of fat (and its not from the Obama lunch tray, if anyone actually thinks that is making a difference they really are living as sheltered life) and does not need anything that you have for support. Dont have a basement because it wont be needed. I think this is the part where I tell you to look outside of your little window because their is a whole big world out there that you have no clue about and that some things need to be left alone. And considering your clueless analogy, a kiss my a$$ is in order as well.

        October 15, 2012 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charlie the Dog

      I have 2 girls and if I'd had a boy...or if one of my girls wanted to play, I'd let them. Get a grip....this is just another game that kids play, high-schoolers love...and middle America gets their kicks from on a Sunday afternoon. Don't sign 'em up if you don't want to...protect them to the point that they've become sissies, make them stay inside and play safe games like the X-Box....and maybe some day they can join the Air Force. For the rest...Football and Army, Navy or Marine Corps all the way!!!

      October 15, 2012 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • mark

      Bailey writes like he had too many concussions growing up.

      October 15, 2012 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bailey

        and I do so I am speaking from experience. You don't know what it is until it is too late, good luck to your kids.

        October 15, 2012 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Barbarian Man

    Football will never be banned. The NFL is God and the controller of what people do after Church on sunday. Im very disappointed enhancing drugs are frowned upon. Let them bench 600 lbs and jump higher. These people aren't role models. They don't build bridges. they are nothing more then mere entertainers in the gladiator dome. Lets throw back in the game the lions and tigers its getting boring to watch these knuckleheads. There purpose in life is to hurt people and rage. Is the problem with the players or the fact its sooo big its never going to go away. We can get 100,000 people together and pay high dollar for a sport of rage, yet we can't get 100,000 people together on sunday to help the world in any which way shape or form. Im not even speaking religious, unless your talking to a football fan. There purpose in life is as sorry as the sport is pathetic. Nothing like a good butt slap to get ya motivated! son slap slap Woooooooooo! Who wants to go shower together big muscle man boys! Whats wrong with everything....CONAN POWER!!!

    October 15, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Silent_Surface

      Hmmmm, tell us how you really feel...

      October 15, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
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