(TheConservativeTimes.org) – On Wednesday, lawmakers will be debating whether or not tackle football will be banned in the state of California for children under 12 years old.
The bill was just scheduled to have its first public hearing and still has a while before it would be passed. The bill must be cleared on Wednesday and must be cleared by the end of January to become a full law this year. However, if the bill does pass, it will not become law until 2026.
This bill comes right after flag football became popular, thanks to new exposure on social media, especially for young girls. It’s also in response to a lot of research coming out about the effects of tackle football. Research has shown that tackle football can cause brain damage and it increases the longer that you play. More specifically, it can cause Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy which causes brain cells to die.
Chris Nowinski, who is CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation, said, “I don’t have a problem with NFL players, who are adults and understand the risk and are compensated, risking CTE. I can’t imagine a world in which we have children, who don’t understand the risk, doing this for fun and taking the same risk with their brain.
There have been a few different states that have tried to pass similar laws but they have not passed. California already has a ban on full-contact practices for high school and youth football teams while also limiting practices to two per week during preseason and regular season.
Steve Famiano, who leads the Save Youth Football California coalition, said that kids under 12 shouldn’t be forced to play only flag football. He continued, “Flag football is oriented toward leaner, faster kids, and some of the kids we see in tackle football may not have developed yet physically, they may be a little bit overweight or are larger in stature, maybe not the fastest kid on the team.”
“They fit so perfectly on a youth football team. They get to play offensive line and defensive line. You take that away from those kids, where do they go?” said Famiano.
California has seen a drop in participation in tackle football at the high school level even before the bill became a topic of discussion.
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