Sports concussion danger finally in spotlight
May 16, 2012 3:34PM
Updated: June 29, 2012 8:49AM
Sports concussion danger finally in spotlight for all
It sometimes takes tremendous tragedy to change ideas embedded in our culture. A prime example of this is the “warrior mentality” instilled in football players from when they first strap on pee wee league shoulder pads.
This culture is now under the microscope, with increasing efforts to study the long-term effects of sports concussions and recent high-profile suicides of former players.
With the strongest spotlight focused on professional sports, it is easy to forget that young athletes run many of the same risks on-field as the pros. Fortunately, Illinois recently took much-needed steps to provide young athletes with new concussion protections.
State law now requires that schools and park districts operating athletic programs must educate coaches, athletes, and parents on:
The nature and risk of concussions,
Criteria for removal from and return to play, and
The risks of not reporting head injuries.
This is an important step for protecting our young athletes on the field of play, and we hope the next generation of aspiring professionals will be raised in a culture in which the seriousness and danger of concussions are openly discussed and addressed.
If you are involved in student sports programs in your community, be sure to understand and follow the requirements for protecting young athletes from concussions. Our youth should be playing games with each other, not with their health.
William N. Werner, MD
President, Illinois State Medical Society
President Obama destructively embraces same-sex marriage
In the wake of North Carolina voters’ overwhelming approval of a state constitutional amendment defining marriage as one man, one woman, President Obama announced that he now supports same-sex marriage.
Obama explains, “I’ve always been adamant that gay and lesbian Americans should be treated fairly and equally.”
Who isn’t for fair and equal treatment for every American — including those who identify as homosexual? But fairness and equality do not include legally elevating same-sex relationships to the same level of the God ordained institution of marriage.
The notion that homosexual partners are being denied the freedom to live as they wish is absurd. Homosexuals can have a relationship with any consenting adult they wish. No one is stopping them. Taking these relationships into the public square — demanding that we change public policy, create special laws and change the very definition of marriage — is intolerable. Americans cannot stand by and watch foundational institutions like marriage be undermined by a small minority wanting to impose a radical political agenda on the rest of us.
Simply eliminating an entire gender from the picture and still calling it “marriage” is not a mere redefinition of an institution but rather the destruction of a core principle of society.
David E. Smith
Illinois Family Institute