Recently, several states have taken steps to ban youth tackle football. It has been known for many years that playing contact sports like football is linked to head injuries that have long-term side effects. The states that have proposed the ban are hoping to protect their youth from head injury.
As of November 1, 2019, six states have taken measures against youth tackle football. These states include California, Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Maryland. Last year, researchers from Boston University performed the study showing that some teenage athletes that participated in tackle football or other similar full contact sports had signs of brain damage. Another study by Dr. Ann McKee showed that 99% of deceased NFL players whose brains that were donated to science showed signs of CTE, or Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. We know that CTE and other forms of brain damage is common in football players, but what does it mean? Well, CTE is caused by repetitive hits to the head. Some symptoms of CTE are memory loss, confusion, impaired judgement, impulse control problems, aggression, depression, anxiety, suicidal actions or thoughts, and eventually dementia. These symptoms may begin to appear decades after the player retires. Banning youth tackle football will protect this generation from head injuries that previous generations were unaware of.
In my opinion, children shouldn’t be able to play tackle football until they are 18 years old, or old enough that they are no longer considered a minor. Banning tackle football altogether will create a happier and healthier world for everyone involved in the sport.
By: Ryan Roco
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