Although I think George Carlin said it better when he called it the "pussification of America"
If you don't already know, Real Sports on HBO is one of the best sports shows in America. They are not afraid of the tough topics, and they ask the hard questions. The best part is the analytical, neutral presentation of stories. but enough about them, on to the videos.
Real Sports reporter Bernard Goldberg recently updated a story he did several years ago about the movement in schools to ban dodge ball. That's right, DODGE BALL. You will also see that individuals not only want to ban dodge ball, but all competitive sports from physical education classes on the grounds that it hurts and humiliates young children. However, you will see that this issue is much more bigger than dodge ball.
Let's just take this down Fire Joe Morgan style. After that I'll offer some of my opinions.
1:15 Neil Williams: Great, so we bring in the academics to fix the educational system (pet peeve). For the record, we called the game bombardment. But Neil, lets get real for a second. We are talking about the same kids who go home and play video games where they can take a chainsaw to pedestrians and blow off the heads of aliens. Do you really think bombardment is going to ruin their fragile little minds.
1:50 Paul Zantarsky: Awesome, we receive the infinite wisdom of a P.E teacher. On a certain level I agree with him. I wouldn't FIRE teachers who include dodge ball, but I do think that physical education should progress beyond the "roll out the ball approach." He also claims that it "creates bullies because you go after the smaller, weaker players." 1. Well I don't know if ole Paul has ever been a good dodge ball player, but everyone knows you wait for the other team to waste their balls, gather them up, and use teamwork to attack the better players, THEN you go after everyone else. 2. If you think about it, how is dodgeball any different than any other sport? Shit in football we look for the weak link in a defense to attack. Basketball? Shoot if I'm manned up against Icehouse, and all other players are equal, guess who gets the ball? (Hint: Icehouse) So Paul, by your logic we should eliminate all competitive sports from the lives of children? (more on this later)
2:45 Matt Labash: Ahhh yes, enter the meathead who is opposed to eliminating dodge ball. Although I think this issue shouldn't be politicized, it doesn't help that he writes for The Weekly Standard. And there it is: "The wussification of America" Smart move playing to your base.
Aggression begets more aggression? Big word for a P.E teacher, but no, you're right, we should just suppress any type of aggressive feeling and let it build up inside of us. Aggression isn't natural or anything, we weren't wired that way through years of evolution. so yeah, suppress that shit.
05: always check your 9 and 3 after throwing a ball. ALWAYS.
15: New PE, sounds cool....wait they want to move away from competitive games? Seriously?
26: Square dancing and balloon tossing. Yep they are pretty damn serious.
45: Such a badass.
55: Overlooking the fact that musical chairs is largely based on luck, perhaps those children should pay attention. Just a thought.
1:21 Hey Mr. Badass, humiliation isn't a good thing. Furthermore its dependent upon how children perceive their actions. Meaning if I'm a D-bag teacher I could theoretically make everyone feel like shit, but what would that accomplish? I agree with the idea that competition is a good idea, but humiliation is simply the wrong word. In regards to the lessons we are trying to teach. Humiliation, no. Failure, maybe. Working hard but not being the best, yes.
1:57: Ok now we're just getting silly. The point of skipping rope is to develop hand eye coordination along with agility. Now I jump this "rope" fairly often. And you know what? Sometimes I screw up. When I do screw up I know what I did wrong. Furthermore, the "rope" forces me to make sure my jumps are high enough and coordinated. You know...as oppose to just jumping up and down like a jackass. This has to be the dumbest idea I've ever hear of.....
Wait, that was only the second worse idea.
Hopefully you'll realize this is not a left or right issue. I'll agree with Labash on a couple of points. First, this is much more than dodgeball, or sports for that matter. Look at the Spelling Bee. Those kids study their ass off. Most of them "fail" at their goal of winning. Are they upset? Hell yeah they are. But guess what? Those kids are going to be fine and grow from this experience. Which brings me to Labash. Using the word humiliation is probably the wrong thing. The best thing about sports, or life in general is that sometimes we fail, but we all learn from those experiences. And I totally agree that this whole dodgeball thing is screwing kids up for the rest of their life. I mean what happens when they are faced with adversity. Something like...oh I don't know AN ECONOMIC CRISIS.
The new PE thing is fine on the surface. Like I said I think schools should move beyond the whole roll out the ball approach to PE, but shit, no competition? The other thing I'll mention is that if you notice two of the schools have rock climbing walls. I'm sure that type of shit is on the top of the list for most school districts who are facing multi-million dollar deficits.
Finally, Principal Hollingsworth. Barf.
Shit I don't know how we all made it through grade school with bumps, bruises, cuts, scrapes, bloody noses, fights, dead legs, quarters, bloody knuckles, tackle football, smear the queer, buts up, high fives, girls, pats on the back, ass slaps, piggy back rides, video games, biology class, high powered vehicles, alcohol, fireworks, homemade bombs, school, sports.
And of course dodgeball.