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Professors Want to End Tackle Football in Public Schools for Youths and Teenagers

Noting that the “sun Is setting’ on tackle football, two University of Minnesota doctors have recommended in an upcoming article that “health professionals” push for the elimination of tackle football in public schools for youths and teenagers because of the high incidence of concussions.

Dr. Steven Miles and Dr. Shailendra Prasad reviewed studies on football-related concussions for their statement, which will appear in the January 2016 issue of American Journal of Bioethics.

“Health professionals should call for ending public school tackle football programs,” they wrote. “We disagree with the perspective and the argument of a recent report (http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2015/10/20/peds.2015-3282.full.pdf+html) by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) that supports the current organization of reforms of youth tackle football.”

For a “special pre-print posting of an editorial,” visit http://www.bioethics.net/2015/10/medical-ethics-and-school-football/

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Will Concussions Lead the NHL to Ban Fighting?

The venerable Toronto Globe and Mail reported last week on what one writer called the NHL’s hypocrisy over fighting. Of course, what’s a hockey game without a couple of guys going after it in a good old-fashioned slug fest.

Last week the Phoenix’s Kyle Chapman and the Canucks Dale Weise did just that, squaring off, throwing vicious shots to each other’s head. Naturally the crowd went wild. But, what’s the game without a fight, right?

There’s a problem here, though. If the league truly wants to minimize headshots and concussions in the name of safety, how does a player slugging someone in the head into a glassy-eyed state accomplish that?

According to one time NHL GM Neil Smith, however, “Concussions rarely are inflicted from fisticuffs in hockey. The jarring effect due to the skating speed is what leads to most concussions.”

Journalist Scott Morrison refers to this NHL double standard as ‘hypocrisy’. “Many still view it [fighting] as a strategy, a momentum changer, a release valve and that it generally involves two players prepared for the blows…” Or what former NHL executive John Shannon calls the “willing participants.”

But, ban fighting? Not sure that’s in the cards. The fans demand it.

To read this article in its entirety, go to – http://bit.ly/VuPy3r

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Politician Moves to Ban Tackle Football for 11-and-under

When I was a kid, it was pretty common to get a bunch of guys together, find a field and play tackle football without pads or helmet.

Those days seem like centuries ago.

States are increasing legislative control over tackle football, especially with regard to concussions and the control over the policy and procedures that govern them. And then there are some state politicians that want to ban youth tackle football altogether.

Witness New York Assemblyman Michael Benedetto, who introduced legislation in recent days to prohibit children younger than 11 from playing organized tackle football anywhere in the state.

“I want to protect the children,” Benedetto, a Democrat, told the New York Daily News on Friday. “I want them to get an appreciation of the game but I also don’t want them to come out of this wonderful sport in a damaged condition.”

John Butler, executive director of Pop Warner Football, didn’t mince words in his reaction, telling the paper that—“Frankly, it is disturbing.”

Garvin Dublin, who helps run the New York City Youth Football League, added that the dangers are being exaggerated.

“Kids at that age don’t move as fast and they don’t collide as fast,” Dublin told the paper, claiming he has only seen two serious injuries in 27 years. Furthermore, “we teach kids how to protect themselves when they are on the field,” he said.

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