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No Harm, No Foul
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The Spectator
founded 2004 by ron cruger
A place for intelligent writers
A place for intelligent readers
 by Laramie Boyd
ecrboyd@aol.com
          Well, the Super Bowl football fiasco is over, at last. I've seen all 47 of them and all I can say is that each year they more and more resemble a street fight between neighborhood hooligans, rather than a game by professional athletes bent on displaying the abilities originally intended to allow one team to win over another, by skill and intelligent planning.
          Such a simple skill as a quarterback throwing a pass to an intended receiver has become all out mayhem. Charging defensive tacklers are allowed, and I believe intend, to smash into the passer not with just the intent to tackle, but to rather brutally injure the man. Even after the passer has released the ball. Referees stand by and watch as the quarterback is literally mauled to the ground by more than the number of tacklers that is realistically required to bring the man down. And the receiver, he can barely get past the line of scrimmage to run a pass pattern, as he's pushed, bumped, grabbed and molested all the way down the field while trying to catch the ball thrown his way. And the antics displayed by a defender if he should be successful and knock down either the quarterback or the receiver and sees to it that they can't get up off the ground, yelling and screaming over the prone body, in his face, profanities and insults, "trash talk" if you will, is a display you might see only in a jungle fight to the death involving wild animals.
          Never mind that if a referee gets in the way of a player who is smacking another player on the helmet, or throwing a punch at an opponent. The player can simply shove the referee out of the way to get to his man. It happens all the time. And no penalty is called. Often the middle of the field looks like a Friday night wrestling melee rather than a football game. And like the bloody hockey matches, where some fans revel in the blood and guts altercations rather than the subtle skills needed to score goals, the gridiron more and more allows brawls that border on free-for- alls, with no enforcement of fighting rules. Or, are there any such rules anymore? Could it be the professional football officials are afraid of losing revenue if they call too many penalties?
          As far as I'm concerned, professional football has been relegated to a game of hurt or be hurt, and get away with any tactic that will allow your team to win, even if it means maiming an opponent, by broken bones or concussions or whatever. No tactic seems to be taboo. I wonder if they could possibly be paying bonuses to the players who knock out an opposing player who has to be carried off the field? Is that what the aim of the game has come to? If so, and it appears to me that is what is happening, then include me out as a spectator.
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