Would You Support a Tackle Football Ban for Kids Under 12?
Here’s The Scoop
Governor Gavin Newsom (D-CA) has finally shown some common sense by rejecting a Democratic proposal to ban full-contact football for children under 12 in California.
Assembly Bill 734, introduced by California Democrat Kevin McCarthy, would gradually ban tackle football for California youth, starting with kids under 6 in 2025, before moving to kids under 10 in 2027 and all children under 12 in 2029.
Newsom made it clear on Tuesday that he would not sign the bill if it made it to his desk, stating, “I will not sign legislation that bans youth tackle football. I am deeply concerned about the health and safety of our young athletes, but an outright ban is not the answer.”
This is McCarthy’s third attempt to pass a bill banning tackle football for the state’s youth. The assemblyman has argued that “Banging your brains around for little kids just isn’t safe.”
Assemblymember Mike Gipson, another California Democrat, also voted in support of the bill while it was in committee, arguing that it doesn’t take away from the good learning opportunities that football provides for the state’s youth.
The proposal would seek to push kids toward flag football as an alternative to tackle football. However, some parents and coaches criticized the ban, arguing that it would push the sport “in the wrong direction.”
Youth and high school football coach Tyrone Jones said, “We would lose the far, greater benefits that football provides to a limited risk, to injury.”
Ashley Bertram, a mother of three boys, added that flag football could be more dangerous since players don’t wear the same protective gear as in full-contact football.
Newsom pointed to action he has already taken to push for more safety standards in youth football, such as the California Youth Football Act, which he signed in 2019.
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