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| Guest Columnist | Harry M. Covert | Jason Miller | Ken Kellar | Patricia A. Kelly | Cindy A. Rose |


As Long as We Remember...

March 2, 2018

No Verbal Gymnastics, Please

Harry M. Covert

It goes without saying, public and private schools do care about the safety of students. That response always comes immediately after tragedies unfold into astonishment, anger and total loss at prevention.


The fatal shootings in Parkland, Florida, still resonate, and should. But, but and but again, who can step forward with an answer?


At the same time, schools have other problems that are prevalent. Again. No answers that work.


The focus today is on Frederick County where a varsity girls high school basketball game was played at a neutral site without fans in a college gym.


The reason for no public viewing of a public school event was made by school officials for alleged racial slurs during a previous contest between the two schools.


Both high school teams are pretty good and competing for championship honors. As of this writing, the game was to be played last night. One of the schools has a large black student body; the other mainly caucasian. That’s not something new.


It hasn’t been proved publicly that any slurs were belched from the bleachers a month ago. Of course, if there were, they were improper and out of line.


So, what’s new in these modern times of accepted cursing of all sorts? Free speech! Ugly talk, for sure.


Just like indiscriminate shootings on school grounds, just how are raucous students and fans going to be curbed from yelling, screaming and unacceptable cheering at sports events?


I feel sorry for students of today embroiled in politically incorrect interference. Are they enjoying school days? Hopefully they are.


Varsity games in all sports bring about obvious partisan exchanges – good and bad.


Are school leaders deaf to constant competitive razzing? Those sitting on the sidelines are full of team spirit and they aren’t quiet following the action.


Game bantering, teasing, chastising and vocal vociferousness is nothing new.


The kiddos of today are not immune from such ongoing words and contretemps.


If coaches and players aren’t in the excitement of the competition, they might as well not compete.


Had the so-called slurs at the Frederick High School versus Linganore High School brought about rioting and other unpleasant conduct, maybe the visiting team’s fans, staff, students and players, would have laid in waiting, planning to get-even.


The above is highly unlikely. The team is more interested in winning, perhaps a championship and the acclamation in school glory.


Certainly officials are always anxious to take care of their responsibility. Parents? Grandparents and taxpayers expect that.


Let’s stop getting so philosophical about how to prevent name-calling in sporting events or anywhere else. It will never happen. It’s foolhardy. It may sound nice but clearly a waste of time.


To change a high school basketball game to a neutral facility is silly. I wonder how many sportswriters and other newsers were anxiously waiting for a quiet game at Hood College Thursday night?


I’d wager it was dull as dirt, a mausoleum. Were the game referees allowed to use their whistles? Could they point the finger and call out the jersey numbers on fouls, fearing hurting feelings of a player? Even the girls would like that.


Such questions! Let the student-athletes play.


Chatter-chatter, trash-talking. It’s part of growing up, maturation. If players are listening to their teacher-coaches, they won’t be bothered by boos, catcalls and other popular encomiums.


Woodsboro - Walkersville Times
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