By Ken Reed
“Imagine this: a pharmaceutical company invents a new drug. A drug with many benefits. It increases cardiovascular fitness, facilitates friendship, creates feelings of excitement, euphoria and community pride. As a side effect, however, the drug also produces varying degrees of acute and chronic brain damage in an indeterminate number of users, for reasons that are only crudely understood.”
— Patrick Hruby, from “The Choice: A Parent’s Dilemma: Should Your Child Play Football?”
As we approach mid-August, parents across the country are wondering if they should allow their children to play tackle football in youth leagues or at the high school level this year.
With all the news reports about concussions, brain trauma, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), concussion-related lawsuits, new research studies, etc., the decision is getting harder and harder every year for many parents.
Patrick Hruby has written an extensive piece about this important decision. In his article, he references numerous recent studies related to football and brain trauma. He also talks to medical experts and parents about the pros and cons of football. Some express pro-football views and some express anti-football views.
Basically, the piece provides a plethora of information for the parent (or athlete) weighing the advantages and disadvantages of playing youth or high school football.
Not everyone will reach the same conclusion but everyone should at least have the information needed to make a well-informed decision. Hruby’s award-winning article (selected for “The Best American Sports Writing 2014”) provides that.
The Choice. When you’re talking about America’s favorite sport, a national obsession, it’s hard to make an unemotional decision. Hruby’s article, and the sources he cites, can help parents do just that.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #13 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Conversation With Long-Time MLB Exec Dan Evans About What’s Right With Baseball and What Could Be Better – Evans is a former general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers and is currently a consultant for Go the Distance Baseball, which owns the Field of Dreams movie site. We discuss his experience at the MLB game at Field of Dreams; his thoughts on the appeal of the Field of Dreams, and baseball in general.
Follow on Facebook: @SportsForumPodcast
Episode #12 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Fun Chat With Dan Gutman, Author of the Baseball Card Adventure Series for Kids
Episode #11 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Latest on Brain Trauma, Concussions and CTE with Dr. Chris Nowinski – Nowinski is CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation.
Episode #10 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: An Issues Discussion With Paul Dolan – Dolan is the Cleveland Indians Owner and CEO.
Episode #9 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Issues With Ralph Nader – Nader is a consumer advocate and was named one of the “100 Most Influential Americans of the 20th Century” by Time magazine. He is the founder of League of Fans.
Episode #8 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Save College Sports From Overcommercialization and Professionalization? – The guest is Dr. David Ridpath, a sports business professor and past president of the Drake Group
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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Ken Reed’s Author Page on Amazon