|CTE: Scarier than Halloween.|
Da-da used to love football -- American football, that is, esp. college football (Da-da used to naively think college sports were, "cleaner" than their professional counterparts, but no more). NFL-wise, Da-da is a lifelong Pittsburgh Steelers fan, having admired the team's work ethic and hard-hitting reputation since the '70s. This was fine when Da-da didn't have kids. He didn't give players' injuries that much thought, any more than they did; like them, he saw injuries as, "part of the game."
But now Da-da is a da-da. This changes everything. He has two boys who've both expressed interest in contact sports. Ma-ma, a psychologist with a keen interest in neuroscience, has consistently said, "No way," while Da-da has looked the other way and made conciliatory noises. No more.
After seeing Frontline's recent documentary, "League of Denial: The NFL's Concussion Crisis," Da-da can no longer support his kids having anything to do with contact sports. Besides this, the denial and innate corporate greed demonstrated by the NFL -- a group that more and more resembles the tobacco lobby, pre-scandal -- guarantees that Da-da will never pay for another $350 NFL Sunday Ticket package, pay to see any more games, or purchase any NFL team merchandise. Da-da's also sorely disappointed with ESPN for kowtowing to the NFL's moolah stream and backing out of supporting the documentary, not to mention giving it rather short shrift in recent coverage.
Unfortunately, the most recent concussion/CTE findings also impact college football. Da-da will sorely miss these games, especially during bowl season. The pressure and injuries will no doubt be made worse by the upcoming playoff scenarios planned for next year.
Decide for yourself. Click the below link to see the documentary.
It's a must-see for players, their relatives, and fans -- but especially for parents who are thinking of signing their kids up to play. Unfortunately, this documentary and the growing mounain of evidence seems to spell the end of football as we know it. Fall will never be the same. But if that's the price to pay for healthy, happy kids living a long a fruitful life, then so be it.