Be Nice! [OPINION]
A few years back our sister station 99.9 KTDY did an 'on air' promotion that included the distribution of 'BE NICE' yellow window signs to place in car windows. Clever sentiment then more more like an imperative now.
The world has gone crazy! We've all heard stories about parents acting like children at little league games and now the sad story out of Salt Lake City, Utah. Ricardo Portillo, soccer referee for an independent youth soccer league called a foul on a player who then punched him in the face. Portillo did walk off the field but later felt dizzy and nauseous when he was brought to local hospital. Portillo slipped into a coma and died Saturday.
The 17 year old player who attacked Portillo was charged with aggravated assault and now charges will be upgraded. The attacker's name has not been released due to his age and he is locked up in a juvenile justice facility.
What kind of world are we living in when parents feel it is permissible to yell and scream at coaches and officials at little league games? Is this type of behavior influencing how 17 years old interact with authority figures? I certainly believe that things have gotten way out of kilter when adults charge the field with insults and worse for coaches and referees and I think that behavior influences the behavior of young athletes.
True these are competitive sports with aggressive contact but the contact has to be appropriate and confined to participants.
Some people say this behavior is being fueled by college scholarships being on the line in many cases. So what? This aggressive behavior has cost one 46 year old referee his life, caused immeasurable lifetime pain and suffering for his family and certainly cost the attacker his scholarship and possible many years of his life.
It's time we dial down this aggressiveness and let's "BE NICE".