PBS on Oct 8,2013 aired a Frontline documentary regarding chronic traumatic encephalopathy brain injuries that are occurring to football players in the National Football League, along with strong evidence that this may be a significant risk factor in football played at all levels, to which younger players maybe particularly vulnerable. These injuries lead to an array of illnesses, mental and physical, and is responsible for premature and early deaths including suicide.
This is an absolute ‘must-see’ for any football fan, parent or loved one of anyone who plays or has played the game at any level, or anyone concerned with issues of justice and corporate greed in our society
It is a stellar production and a major exposition, and a debt of gratitude is owed to everyone from Dr Bennett Omalu, the Pittsburgh pathologist who first detected the disease in the brain tissue of former Pittsburgh Steeler, Mike Webster to the producers at Frontline.
The NFL will no doubt continue its push back with its manipulation of research data and denials as the tobacco industry did with cigarettes and as the energy industry does now with climate change. Corporate greed rules in our economy.
But there must be public advocacy for change to protect the long-term health and safety of thousands, if not millions, of youth at unnecessary risk to suffer a debilitating life time head injury with the possibility they might not even be aware of it.
I am a football fan. I do not want to see the end of the sport, but I am willing to see the end of the sport as it is played today in the interest of the young men of tomorrow.