Throwing a football on the playground is a game as old as time (or at least as old as the game itself). But the pigskin has been pulled from the playground at one Long Island school because kids are getting hurt.
Oh my stars, can you imagine? A child, getting hurt?
Why, that never, ever happens in my house. Uh uh. There are no skinned knees here. No bug bites either. And certainly not anything that may require a Band-Aid. Why, we're just like every other house with an elementary schooler -- absolutely accident-free. Wait, that's what your house is like, right? RIGHT?
Alright, alright, I'll admit it.
That's all a load of horse manure.
Yes, my 8-year-old gets hurt sometimes. Of course she does! She's 8! And she's a human being! She got a knock on the noggin at soccer practice a few weeks ago. And there's a bruise on her knee from something or other that happened at the park.
So what did I do about it? Tell her she can't go to the park anymore because she might get hurt? Pull her out of soccer immediately?
Nope and nope. I checked her to make sure it was nothing serious and sent her back out to live her life because, sometimes, we get hurt. And unless you want your kid to miss out on pretty much everything fun in life, you've got to tell them to buck up!
Unfortunately, schools can't tell kids to buck up. Every time you turn around, they're getting sued. And so every time you turn around, another absolutely ridiculous ban is being put in place.
That's the type of thing the folks at Weber Middle School in Port Washington, New York seem to be indicating, right? Kids are getting hurt; they don't want to get sued, so they're banning footballs.
Normal parents like me get angry with the schools, but is it really their fault? Or is it the fault of the parents who won't just tell their kids to buck up? Who won't accept that kids getting hurt is a part of life?
Maybe the answer isn't in banning footballs (or tag) but in asking the rest of us if we'll sign a waiver that our kids CAN play with footballs ... and we're OK with the normal bumps and bruises of childhood. It's not a perfect option; the much more preferable one would be parents who just stopped being so sue happy and kids who understood that one little bump is not the end of the world.
But this is where we are, folks. We have schools banning FOOTBALLS, and we parents have to stand up for common sense, have to do something for our kids. A waiver protects the schools, and it protects our kids from a fate far worse than a skinned knee: missing out on childhood.
Would you sign a waiver like this?
Image via Complete Merchandise/Flickr