Democrats in the California legislature recently introduced the “Safe Youth Football Act,” a bill designed to outlaw tackle football for all kids under the age of 14.
If the bill were to become law, California would become the first state to enact such a ban, while three other states – Illinois, New York, and Maryland – have also proposed similar legislation over the past month.
Assemblymembers Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento) and Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) introduced the bill, claiming their intent is to “protect children from brain injury by establishing a minimum age to play in organized tackle football programs.”
The bill is yet another alarmist response to a growing narrative that playing football at a young age leads to brain damage later in life, despite what many experts call “missing links and gaps in knowledge.”
To lend credence to his effort, Assemblyman McCarty included on his website a quote from Dr. Bennet Omalu, the Nigerian-American doctor who claims he discovered chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).
“The research is clear – when children participate in high-impact, high-contact sports, there is a 100% risk of exposure to brain damage,” Omalu said. “Once you know the risk involved in something, what’s the first thing you do? Protect children from it.”
Dr. Omalu has long credited himself with discovering CTE, the brain disease he believes playing football causes.
However, according to scientific journals and brain researchers interviewed by the Associated Press, Omalu neither discovered the disease nor named it, and goes too far when he publicly takes credit for naming or discovering CTE.
‘‘It’s just not true, and I think he knows that,’’ said William Stewart, a neuropathologist at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow.
‘‘Chronic traumatic encephalopathy has been around for decades. It’s not a new term,’’ Stewart said. ‘‘The only thing I would say that Bennet has done is that he identified it in an American footballer.’’
Omalu also made headlines during the 2016 Presidential campaign when he claimed that Hillary Clinton had been poisoned, after Clinton collapsed while leaving the September 11th Memorial in New York City.
I must advice the Clinton campaign to perform toxicologic analysis of Ms. Clinton’s blood. It is possible she is being poisoned.
— Bennet Omalu (@bennetomalu9168) September 12, 2016
Omalu went on to blame then-candidate Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimier Puttin for the supposed “poisioning” of Clinton.
I do not trust Mr. Putin and Mr. Trump. With those two all things are possible.
— Bennet Omalu (@bennetomalu9168) September 12, 2016
Make-A-Wish Vanderbilt Kicker Sarah Fuller Will Take Part in Joe Biden’s Inauguration
Vanderbilt University student Sarah Fuller, goalie for the women’s soccer team and erstwhile emergency kicker for the men’s football team, will be taking part in the inauguration of Joe Biden.
USA Today reports that Fuller will participate in a television program titled “Celebrating America,” which will be simulcast the evening of Inauguration Day on ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, and PBS.
Fuller confirmed the news on Twitter Sunday afternoon.
“It’s an honor to be invited to participate in one of America’s greatest traditions,” Fuller tweeted with pictures of herself on the Vanderbilt football field. “This historic inauguration is especially meaningful for American women and girls. The glass ceilings are breaking and it is the time to #LeadLikeAWoman.”
— Sarah Fuller (@SarahFuller_27) January 17, 2021
Multiple guests will appear on the program in addition to Fuller. Tom Hanks is hosting and both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be giving speeches.
Back in November and December the mainstream media lauded Fuller for becoming the first woman to play and then score in a Power Five college football game. In her first appearance she squib kicked the ball to Missouri’s 37-yard line and subsequently hurried to the sidelines. In later appearances she made two extra points following Vanderbilt touchdowns.
Fuller became Vanderbilt’s emergency kicker after their starting and backup kickers could not play due to COVID-19 protocols.
Big League Politics previously covered the Sarah Fuller story, specifically the reaction of Jason Whitlock, a conservative-friendly sports writer who once worked for Fox Sports. Whitlock called her appearance a “Make-A-Wish” publicity stunt.
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