The Elevation of Cheap Shots

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                                   September 7, 2015

                                        

This past weekend a high school football official was blind-sided by one player and then speared by another during a game in Texas. Video footage of the incident quickly hit social media. A few moments before that two other players on the same team had been ejected. An investigation has been started.

Accusations began flying about what the official had done to precipitate such an attack, as if it made the actions justified. From the video it is apparent that the backsode collision was not an “oops” moment. In fact, it looks like the two players planned the attack and carried it out to perfection.

A few years ago at a high school basketball game in our area a parent bit one of the officials as he was leaving the court. Recently a soccer official of a men’s recreation league game…let me say that again…a men’s recreation league game, was killed as a result of being attacked a over-the-hill soccer player.

Having refereed high school basketball for thirteen years I know that the people in stripes don’t do it for the money. In our area a varsity game official gets $52. That $52 has been preceded by meetings, referee camps, clinics, rules meetings, and area meetings. Put all that together and it comes to a little less than minimum wage.

Some people argue that where there is competition there inevitably will be high emotions and intense reactions. Once again we rack up the list of excuses for people to act like lunatics.

I play hoop still, at sixty-one…and a half…at the local YMCA at 6:00 in the morning. Almost all of us have to go to work afterwards, but there have been a few guys who think it is the difference between life and death.

There’s been a few guys who have been ushered out of the gym. Our sarcastic sides tell those who have lost their grip on reality that there is are calls for them in the lobby from the Nuggets front office.

But then there are those who play for the fun of it, for the recreation, and laughter. Most of us know that we are has-beens or never-was’s…and we are okay with that. We go home to families who live us despite our lack of having a left hand and being a step slow on defense.

People need to be more like Mayberry, pretend that Floyd has a basketball court behind his barber shop or football field across the street.

When two high school players plan a team attack against a man with a whistle looking the other way it’s time to step back and ask ourselves what is going on?

Explore posts in the same categories: children, Parenting, Story, Teamwork, Uncategorized, Youth

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