Each year, hundreds of millions of children around the world get sports injuries.
The statistics are horrifying and the problem is by no means confined to children; many grown adults (who really should know better by that stage in their lives) also fall victim to this epidemic of self-harm.
Australia is one of the worst cases. From football fields to cricket nets, tennis courts to surfing beaches we find the same grim pattern: thousands upon thousands of avoidable injuries daily, sometimes serious, occasionally leading to permanent disability or even death.
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Governments have been slow to act. Indeed, the public is often encouraged to think that it’s OK to engage in sporting self-harm. This is partly cultural – but of course big money is the root cause. Vast sums are made by sports purveyors as they peddle their deadly products to an unwary population – targeting youth and preying on the most vulnerable sports-addicts in our society.
Tolerance has been tried, but it has comprehensively failed. Some liberals hoped a little ping pong might not be too harmful at weekends, but it’s a gateway sport that leads on to dangerous field sports and worse. The best policy, of course, is to just say no to sport – and governments should show zero tolerance to sports abusers.
Sports injuries impose a terrible burden on our hospitals and medical system as a whole. There are huge costs to the economy in terms of absenteeism and lost working days. Sports tempt students to skip on their studies. Then there are the millions of passive consumers of sport, who sit at home growing obese watching others engage in these anti-social activities, irradiated by big-screen TV.
Worst of all, sports fans occasionally congregate in large groups to watch “matches” where professional sports addicts are encouraged to compete like gladiators in Ancient Rome. The behaviour of large congregations of sport-fans is so atrocious it makes urban rioters look like gentlemen.
As tolerance and harm minimization have been tried without success, there’s only one solution to the problem…
We need a global WAR on Sports!
Australia's 'Tough on Sports' PM Julia Gillard educates children on the perils of sport: "Sports kill people, they rip families apart, they destroy lives and we want to see less harm done through sports usage."
These dangerous activities should be completely banned and we must unleash our under-employed police to go after pushers of sports products and their hapless users. We’ll certainly need special Sports Squads to target the pernicious industry, along with anti-corruption police to make sure corrupt sports police don’t end up running illicit sports rackets.
Above all, we must ensure children are taught to avoid these dangerous activities from a very early age.
Better border protection will help us avoid the harmful impact of the international trade in soccer balls, tennis rackets and surf boards. Mail intercepts will crack down on sports profiteers who operate in cyberspace.
Australia is well placed to lead the War on Sports.
Although we have a dubious international reputation for being sports-crazy, if we can take on the powerful sports industry and ban it coast to coast, it will prove to the world what can be achieved with guts and determination. Our expertise is sports-suppression will doubtless become a major Australian export industry in the decades ahead.
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A few whingers may complain that they enjoy sports. Some may even try to claim they’re only engaging behaviour that doesn’t affect others.
These are very selfish arguments.
Australia’s bookish Foreign Minister – a man who’s been completely sports-free for many years and thrives as a result – said it well.
Senator Bob Carr is a moderate on banning sports and an advocate of harm minimisation rather than ruthless suppression. Even so, Carr said recently that doing sport is “dumb”. He advised anyone feeling tempted to “go for a bushwalk instead!”
POSTSCRIPT – 5th April 2012
It seems I’m not the only one to have serious concerns about the sports pandemic.
Alan Watt, who has a website called Cutting through the Matrix, takes a dim view of the role of mass sport in the media-facilitated dumbing down of modern humanity.
Thanks to PsychoANONysis for the heads up on this.