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VIOLENCE IN YOUTH SPORTS Its a beautiful fall day There is a touch of autumn in the air and the azure sky contrasts the dark green grass of the peewee football field Children line up in a mock exhibition of an NFL pro game Signals are called and the ball is clumsily hiked and soon fumbled The opposing team picks up the ball and runs the entire 50-yard length of the field The referee signals Touchdown But there is some sort of disturbance A man is on the field shouting and gesticulating His face is red either from anger or drink He is furious at the referee How could you be so stupid Didnt you see that kid go offside Are you freakin blind The referee tries to calm the man down and get him off the field A pushing match ensues and the red-faced man throws a haymaker at the refs chin It barely makes contact Concerned parents take the irate incoherent father aside Kids are crying while the referee rubs his chin and wonders what the hell happened Adult violence in youth sports has roots in everyday life There are too many incidents of parents introducing grown-up rage into youth sports An article written by Denise Mann published in Positive Coaching Alliance cites several examples In Florida a high school baseball coach was arrested for punching an umpire and breaking his jaw Angry parents have fired off guns at peewee football games Little league pitchers have been bribed to bean opposing batters In 1996 Wisconsins district attorney lost his job for shoving a referee into a wall during his sons junior varsity basketball game Where does this senseless rage come from Why do otherwise normal people become enraged over such an innocent event as a pick-up
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