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HURLEY Reeling in Recess! 
by Patrick Hurley [scriptwriter] 6/29/06

There is a new sheriff in town. He is called, for lack of a more sophisticated term, “Wussy.” He and his cohorts, “Pansie,” “Dopey,” “Overreactionary,” “Milquetoast,” “Jellyfish” and, “Momma’s Boy,” have changed the elementary school frontier forever.

From Charleston, S.C. to Cheyenne, Wyoming, children will not be able to play “dangerous” games at recess because they might get injured. This spineless approach to childhood has now eliminated potentially life-threatening activities like soccer and tag. The real killer, dodgeball, was taken out years ago. After all, a young person could get a WELT on their arm or something. We can’t have THAT now can we!

Patrick Hurley

Patrick Hurley is an independent conservative thinker living in Orange County, California. He has addressed over six million people in 47 states nationwide and won three Emmy awards for television comedy.[go to Hurley index]

In an era where obesity is not only ravaging one-third of the adult American populace, we are now ensuring that the kids are going to get fat, too. Don’t let them run, they could fall down. Don’t let them throw, they could injure someone. What is next? Don’t let them BREATHE, the air might be polluted? These are elementary school children….let them PLAY! We did. By October, my jeans had holes in the knees. It was a badge of honor. If these fanatical do-gooders had seen some of the thing WE did as kids, they would have a heart attack. Remember the game, “stretch?” You faced your opponent and one of you would throw a knife into the ground. The other person would have to stretch their leg to reach it. This went back and forth until one person fell down. Can you IMAGINE that game being played today on the school yard? Heavens to Betsy, NO! But, we loved it. How about tackle football? Kick the can? Capture the Flag? Marco Polo? Are you aware that several school districts have eliminated TOUCH football? Sheriff Wussy has been real busy, pardners.

The joys of childhood are mixed with reality and pleasure. A kid needs to be knocked down so he can learn to get back up. It is okay for a child to be popped with a large rubber ball, it teaches them resourcefulness and the ability to overcome pain and failure. So what if his team loses, it educates him on the real world of winning and losing. Adults fall and hurt themselves, that is what doctors and bandages are for. Why are we so afraid to let our children experience the same things? Overprotecting them is not a healthy way to bring them along in life. What are they going to do the first time they are on their own and they face a bill they cannot pay or they are rejected by an employer for that job they were seeking? If they never learn to lose in childhood, they are not going to be real good at coping with rejection in adulthood, are they?

So, recess in elementary school must be down to a few options now. Only play on the thick grass. Do not run. Do not touch anyone in any manner. Do not leave your feet unless you do so in a gradual, gentle, slow manner…

Today’s generation of young people has already been physically numbed as they sit vacantly in front of a computer or a video game. Left to their own devices at night or on the weekend, they have chosen to sit on their butts and let their fingers do all the exercise. Those digits will be the only parts of their bodies not gaining weight in the next several years. Their only hope has been school and the exercise allowed there. Slowly but surely that is being taken away, too. Do we need legislation to step in and tell these school districts that it is okay for our children to run, fall down, get swatted by a ball and skin their knees? Or is, “Red Rover, Red Rover” an extinct joy of playground past?

Let’s stop the insanity and let kids be kids. That is what they do best. Or we may find ourselves not only softer as a nation with each succeeding generation, but also joyless because the most important part of our memories were stifled by those who went beyond their own responsibility and reason….

Our childhood. CRO

copyright 2006 Patrick Hurley




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