The Council Has Spoken: January 31, 2014

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3 Comments

  1. Ymarsakar:

    http://www.watcherofweasels.org/forum-did-you-watch-the-superbowl-this-weekend-why-or-why-not/

    In reply to what you wrote here for the forum question on the SB, why do you not advocate individual player choice in the amount of armor up or down that a player can equip?

    Many of the impact injuries are the result of mass and gravity, due to hard armor, equipment weight, and vector trajectories of the tackle.

    Why is it necessary to pass legislation nanny laws to protect players when they can protect themselves by shedding their armor?

  2. Scott Kirwin:

    I hope I haven’t called for legislation in anything that I’ve written about the sport, because I don’t think either that or changing the rules (e.g. banning certain hits, shortening kick offs) will make the sport any safer. I agree that shedding the armor akin to the way Australian rugby is played would probably make the sport safer than wrapping the players in bubblewrap. It’s just that from my understanding of the medical science, even small repetitive hits can lead to brain damage down the road. It would be interesting to see if European and Aussie rugby players suffer from the same injuries that American football players do. Ditto the Canadian.

    In the meantime however I simply can’t stomach the sport anymore. It’s really unfortunate. I wasted money – $200 on DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket this year. Sharing in the enjoyment of the sport gave me a connection to others that I no longer have. As I’ve stated, I do NOT want to see the sport banned – hell, I support the legalization of heroin and more people die from that than football. But I can no longer enjoy or participate in the sport in any way.

  3. Ymarsakar:

    It’s just that from my understanding of the medical science, even small repetitive hits can lead to brain damage down the road.

    It takes a certain amount of time for the brain tissues to reconstruct themselves, so further brain bruising will accumulate damage over time if there is insufficient healing time. It’s very similar to boxer dizziness that comes from repeated knockouts. Even light concussions are often ignored in favor of winning or more practice. Although I believe the Japanese have more problems with that, given their spirit of toughness and social face.

    I haven’t read any proposals for legislation on your part, but your answer to the forum question sounded like you had done something horrible on this matter. Horrible for me, would be to fight for individual liberty yet also default to legislative solutions.

    It would be interesting to see if European and Aussie rugby players suffer from the same injuries that American football players do.

    From what I have heard, because the risk to people increase, people do the smart thing and avoid hard on collisions. For the tackler, they can absorb the “shock” via their armor, whereas the person being tackled usually can’t avoid it, especially if he has to keep the ball and can’t block the impact of his head on the ground with his hands. The initial impact of armor on armor, whip lashes the head for the target, but not the tackler since the tackler is in the “charge position”. It just compresses his head down in. Then when the target hits the ground, another whiplash and concussive impact hits the brain, that penetrates through the armor since impact/concussion/blunt force can go through hard armor. In Rugby or original American football, people did not have this armor, so they would take almost as much damage tackling someone as the tackled. Thus they avoided numerous repeated hits, which will probably reduce the chance for injury as well in both the short and long term.

    This kind of pattern is similar to the housing bubble and other economic markets, where the increase in risk makes people act smarter because the ones that act dumb tend to be terminal and they cease affecting the markets soon enough. Whereas in the housing bubble, everyone was motivated to act stupid and reckless, thereby resulting in a crash.

    Other individuals from Bookworm Room, which I came from through the Council links, also share your impression of modern day American football.

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