by Michael Lowrey
Speaking of football, I find it increasingly difficult to justify to myself why I should continue to watch the game. I reject watching college football simply because of the corrupting message it sends to our young adults and society — that greed is good, that anything and everything is for sale if enough money is involved, even and especially by institutions that are in the business of teaching virtue to our next generation.
More broadly, the problem with football is the huge toll it takes upon those that play the game, especially those that play it at its highest level. The title of this PBS Frontline article says it all “76 of 79 deceased NFL players found to have brain disease.” The degenerative brain disease in question is chronic traumatic encephalopathy:
CTE occurs when repetitive head trauma begins to produce abnormal proteins in the brain known as “tau.” The tau proteins work to essentially form tangles around the brain’s blood vessels, interrupting normal functioning and eventually killing nerve cells themselves. Patients with less advanced forms of the disease can suffer from mood disorders, such as depression and bouts of rage, while those with more severe cases can experience confusion, memory loss and advanced dementia.
It’s hard to feel good about myself watching men destroy themselves for my entertainment.