ATTLEBORO, Mass. - Tag, you're out! Officials at an elementary school south of Boston have banned kids from playing tag, touch football and any other unsupervised chase game during recess for fear they'll get hurt and hold the school liable.OK ... what the fuck?
Recess is "a time when accidents can happen," said Willett Elementary School Principal Gaylene Heppe, who approved the ban.
It was bad enough when schools started banning dodgeball, because they said it allowed the bigger, more athletic kids to not only pick on smaller, weaker children, but also to strike them.
But how much more are we going to coddle our children? Are we going to set the swings so they don't go to high, or the merry-go-round so it doesn't go too fast? Are we going to start making them wear pads and helmets before they can go to recess, or bundle them up in bubble wrap?
You know what the real problem is with kids today? The adults and parents -- most of whom probably got beaned by a few dodgeballs in their day.
Kids today miss out on so much because of new rules and regulations; they miss out on valuable learning experiences, which start teaching them what life is going to be like.
Now we have games in which no score is kept, so that everyone is a winner. Every team gets trophies at the end of the season, even if they never won a game. In some instances, grades aren't given out any more so some kids won't feel dumb. There have even been college students who have sued because they weren't happy with their C's.
Guess what folks. Sometimes, you lose. Sometimes, you're a loser. Sometimes, people, kids included, ARE dumb.
If you never lose as a child, how will you cope with that when you're an adult? If you're not graded on the quality of your work but rather on your effort, or just the fact that you tried, how are you ever going to be a productive member of the work force?
Companies could give a rat's ass if you try hard. They want you to try hard and get it right. Get it wrong enough times, or even once, and you're out of a job.
Life, as we all know -- some of us more than others -- is NOT fair. It's not easy. The world is not fair or fun or easy all the time; in fact, it's none of those things most of the time.
We're raising a generation of children who will be completely unable to cope with living in the real world -- managing a household budget, getting a job and keeping it, learning how to deal with problems and bad surprises, etc.
Now I'm not talking about going back to the days of children working in mines and sweatshops, or of getting smacked with yardsticks in schools. I don't advocate bullying or kids being excessively mean and nasty to those who are different.
But for God's sake ... banning TAG because it's dangerous?
Give me a fucking break.
We've got to let kids be kids ... and to have kid experiences. We have to let them live and learn.