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... And This Is Exactly Why You Shouldn't Let Your Kids Play Pee-Wee Football

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | January 7, 2014 |

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | January 7, 2014 |

I don’t want to speak to whether the newly formed Esquire network should be showing Friday Night Tykes or not. After all, the 90-second promo doesn’t exactly glorify the yelling, the violence, and the abuse that apparently goes on in Texas Pee-Wee football. Maybe it’s even good that the show brings this out into the open. Maybe it will spark correction action, and hopefully, it will get someone fired (although, that seems doubtful in the great state of Texas, where you’re never too young for a concussion).

Before I say anything else about Friday Night Tykes, just watch the preview. Place your mouth in the agape position:

What are these kids? Seven or eight? And they’re being encouraged to go helmet-to-helmet? No wonder the NFL is already concerned about the series. I appreciate the these kids aren’t coddled, and that they’re not given gold stars for simply showing up, but Jesus Christ, at some point, shouldn’t the safety of kids factor in? What the f*ck is even being gained by an eight year old winning a state football championship?

Toddlers and tiaras is a despicable business, but at least, the damage is limited to life-long emotional trauma. Here, it’s just as likely to be physical as it is emotional. A broken mind can be healed; a broken neck cannot. And even if your kid is on a Pee Wee Football team where smash-mouth, head-busting, neck-breaking style of play is not encouraged, it doesn’t mean that the players on the opposing team aren’t pushed to engage in it.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

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