Football Thoughts

It has been months since I last blogged. However, recent issues seem to have rekindled my desire to put thought to paper, so to speak. The following is my response to the various posts that have appeared in the Amarillo paper regarding Tulia’s football program.

Tulia has been the center of controversy for 10 years. The first instance was related to drug busts. As the daughter of the Texas sheriff who oversaw and endured that process, I feel Kameron Lingor’s pain in so many ways. It is very frustrating to watch outsiders pass judgment on the actions of good men when they (the outsiders) have no idea what all was involved in the decisions that were made. It is very easy to be critical of those decisions when you are not the one responsible for the health, well-being, safety, and futures of people’s lives.

The latest controversy is another example of people who don’t have all the facts passing judgment. Their time would be much better spent helping to create a vision of what we desire for our community, focusing on what is working, and praising those kids who are out there working their tails off making our community proud, because there are several of those kids. What we give attention and energy to grows. Many have spent countless hours and loads of time and energy fighting against something. How about sending all that energy toward supporting something positive instead? We might all be amazed at how the negative fades as the positive grows and blossoms. Words are in fact prophetic and by lumping all of the students in Tulia schools as quitters, drunks, and druggies, as some have suggested, we create a self-fulfilling prophecy. Our kids have enough baggage and self-esteem issues without the rest of the world telling them how pathetic they are.  Yes, some have shown a frustrating lack of commitment, but again, the focus should be on the successful kids and not the slackers.

As a mother of girls, this particular “battle” isn’t mine to fight, and I have made a conscious choice not to be against anyone or anything in this situation. However, the mom in me appreciates and respects the decision not to tie 14 year old boys to the railroad tracks in front of a freight train (Muleshoe) which would subject them to a high potential for life altering injuries. There is much wisdom in focusing on the bigger picture, the one that looks beyond the current season toward a successful future with strong healthy kids who are ready to play at the varsity level in years to come.  It would be senseless and selfish to throw young boys into a varsity jersey in order to save face with the great Friday night football gods.  That takes a tremendous amount of courage and sacrificing one’s own pride for the greater good. Muleshoe, I am sorry that your precious stats and your homecoming were inconvenienced. Have a little decency and congratulate yourselves for your tolerance and contribution to the future growth of a struggling program.  As an aside, if this were cross country or volleyball canceling the remainder of the season, it wouldn’t even be noteworthy. There is definitely a double standard.  

As for the comment referencing the Christian lady that some believe has been a thorn in the side of TISD administration, I do have an opinion. I choose not to have an opinion about her agenda, but I do respect the fact that she chooses to stand strongly and courageously for what she believes in, which is basically equity among boys’ and girls’ sports and strong leadership. Girls’ sports are required by law to receive equal funding and services. While I recognize that football is an expensive sport, the law is the law. Title IX is what it is. I do not fault a person for insisting that the numbers should line up on paper. Schools are accountable to whomever pays the bills. Bottom line, my kids have greatly benefitted from her stance, whether or not I agree with her methods.

Her insistence that the current situation is a reflection of leadership is certainly something that should get the attention of our leaders, if for no other reason than an opportunity to self-evaluate. Our human nature tends to throw us into defensive mode when we feel we are being attacked.  Enlightened leaders are those who can rise above the perceived personal attack and recognize it for what it is: an opportunity to show true wisdom and loving leadership or angry arrogance and defiance. I’m not sure I would be a very enlightened leader at this point in my life. My feelings hang out on my shoulders more than I would like. I hope and trust our school leadership is much more enlightened than I am and will take seriously the concerns expressed with an open and objective mind. People have a reason for their opinions and feelings. Either they are mis-informed, or they are right. It is up to leadership to take an unbiased look at the facts and determine which is the case, making corrections if necessary.

On a related note, Swisher County has been the champion of another dubious honor for decades. Our community is known as the cancer capital of Texas with an extremely high per capita incidence of cancer. Cancer is the body attacking and consuming itself. It is stale and stagnant energy that has become toxic. Eastern medicine suggests that the physical body is a reflection of our emotions, our environment, and even the world in which we live. Christians hold to the concept that we are all one body with many parts. If one part is not healthy, the entire body is weakened.

 Folks, this particular part of the Big Body is very sick. Western medicine provides only three options for any hope of healing: cut out, burn out, or poison the problem, and deal with the residual effects of scarring and disfigurement in the process. Eastern and alternative medicine offers some other options that are much more appealing: treat the body as a whole giving it clean air, healthy nourishing foods, pure water, sunshine, and a healthy dose of laughter. Purge that which is toxic by replacing it with that which is supportive.  I don’t know about you, but I for one would like to give the “healing from within” option a chance. I challenge each of you to identify one way you might help with the healing of our community. Post your ideas as a comment on this blog so we can support each other in this endeavor. Remember it is YOUR body—OUR body—that is sick, because we are all one.  You have the power to heal THIS body.

One Response to “Football Thoughts”

  • Erika:

    …Muleshoe was whining about stats? Wow.

    Tulia’s not the only one who had to forfeit the season. Was talking to someone at Academy today and they said Anton had to do something along the same lines. But I’m not sure if six man is as big a deal of it as 11 man.

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