President Obama is a huge sports fan and loves football; he recently took a break from all of the bi-partisan fighting and political gridlock to weigh in on the violence in pro-football.
The President said that he if he had sons he would have to really think long and hard about letting them play football because of the severe physical toll the game takes on athletes.
“I think that those of us who love the sport are going to have to wrestle with the fact that it will probably change gradually to try to reduce some of the violence. In some cases, that may make it a little bit less exciting, but it will be a whole lot better for the players, and those of us who are fans maybe won’t have to examine our consciences quite as much.” (New Republic)
More than 3,000 former players have sued the NFL for damages for head injuries. The complaints, which are consolidated in federal court in Philadelphia, accuse the league of negligence and failing to inform players of the link between repeated traumatic head impacts and long-term brain injuries.
President Obama also expressed concern for college players who suffered the same injuries but don’t have the union representation or decision making power that NFL players have, he challenged the NCAA to look into safety measures for college athletes.
This statement from POTUS comes just days after linebacker Junior Seau’s family brought a suit against the NFL claiming that his suicide is a direct result of brain disease caused from violent hits and injuries sustained during his playing career.
Seau died at age 43 of a self-inflicted gunshot in May. His family allowed his brain to be studied after his death and it was discovered based on tests performed that he suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), earlier this month.
In a statement Seau’s family said, “We know this lawsuit will not bring back Junior. But it will send a message that the NFL needs to care for its former players, acknowledge its decades of deception on the issue of head injuries and player safety, and make the game safer for future generations.”
We all love the game and demand so much from the athletes in respect to on the field performance. While it’s true that athletes are paid handsomely, they shouldn’t have to live out their retirement from pro sports with constant pain, and debilitating diseases that affect the quality of life of both the players and their families.
The NFL needs to take immediate action into long-term solutions to protect the health and safety of pro athletes….and their families. I would suggest taking a page from MLB and performing blood tests to detect human growth hormones as a start.
The game has evolved to a faster, stronger game, but players juiced up on performance enhancing drugs only escalate and increase the violence of the sport and contribute to severe head injuries.
No word from President Obama yet on what it will take to get the government to work together to pass legislation beneficial to American citizens…..stay turned.
Your Jersey Girlfriend,