movie thoughts … Concussion

June 25, 2016 4:14pm
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movie-concussionGreat movie – Will Smith nailed the accent to a T and I was surprisingly engaged despite not caring the least bit about sports, however we can’t really discuss this movie without bringing up the elephant in the room…

Why in the world do we still play football if it’s so freaking dangerous?!?!?!

As we saw the doctor’s research pan out and then begin to hit the public eye, it almost began an eerie foreshadowing of how the movie was ultimately going to end because clearly with the NFL still raking in billions every year, it’s not like this research that was published more than a decade ago has had any sort of significant impact on the perception and enjoyment of American football across the country.

Thankfully the story ended somewhat happily with Dr. Omalu continuing his investigative passion after turning down a lucrative government job offer, despite the league’s dumbfounding response where they kind of, sort of listened, but at the end of the day they’ve settled lawsuits that they tried to cover up the impact of concussions without actually taking any steps forward to help reduce the impact in the future!!!

I guess that’s what I was waiting to hear, even if just in the closing commentary before the credits, that perhaps new advancements in helmet technology or something was working hard to prevent these injuries from devastating the players after they’ve left their prime, but while they’re still enjoying their hard-earned retirement … and yet nothing of the sort was really offered up in that regard, which is sad because if you do the math, figure that it’s roughly a few hundred players in the NFL at a time taking these deadly risks every game, and millions of fans idolize the sport while billions of dollars are being made in the process…

…but still, is all of that worth it if the very players you’re cheering on the fields are literally killing themselves for the sport of the game?

I mean, it quickly becomes a complicated debate because if we’re being honest here – most of us do things that are bad for us all of the time, whether it’s not taking care of our health or driving less than responsibly on the road or even things like substance abuse, etc… We all take risks that gamble with lives, be it out of laziness or in exchange for pleasure or addiction, and so from that angle when you consider just how passionate people are about this sport, it’s not really a surprise that findings that could/should challenge the viability of the game wouldn’t exactly be greeted with open arms if it could mean having to find something else to do on Sunday nights.

It’s mostly just a tragic tale for me, not being in the slightest bit vested in football myself, aside from in general just not wanting to hear of people dying of preventable diseases, that is. It seems like common sense to me – brain fragile, don’t bash brain into other brains – but then again, there are plenty of other things that I don’t get about professional sports like the amount of public money that gets dumped into building new stadiums, only to have the teams blackout games for local viewers if the stands don’t get filled, but I digress.

Final thoughts – fantastic movie, amazing performance by Will Smith, and there’s no way my kids are going to play football without one hell of a fight. 🙁

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