Mark Palermo

Scam: Youth Sports

He Was Our S.O.B.
Long Ago Saturday Nights at the Circle 9
The Dark Side of Vaccinations
Wine: Where Ignorance and Pretension Find their Loudest Voice
A 1976 Journey in Search of Self
The Machinery of Mass Dreams
The Outlaw Georgie Bush
Sex Offender Registries Out of Control
Extreme Makeover for Airheads
The Fault Lies not in the Stars, but in Ourselves
Reconsidering George Carlin
If You Think Liberals Are Jerks...
She Couldn't Do Her Chores
Remembering Viktor Frankl
One Day on the Farm-1977
A Fresh Look at Meat
How the Real World Works: A Lesson
30 Bucks for the Human Touch
1929 All Over Again
An Old Man's War, A Young Man's Fight
More Things in Heaven and Earth...
Our Dumbed-down Public Discourse
Bread, But No Roses
Earth's the Right Place for Love
Read This Before Enlisting
Poison Is Good for You: The Fluoridation Scam
Ron Paul:He Makes Too Much Sense
War Is a Racket
Brazil's National Orgasm Day
Calling all Liberals!
Why I Don't Get Flu Shots
What is Community?
Haverhillicus Homocrisicum
If You Wanna Be a Junkie, Why?
Do We Know His Family?
Scam: Youth Sports
A Subsidy for the Human Touch?
How Not to Be Boring
If the Bread and Roses Strike Were NOW
America's Problem with the Body
Columbus Day? or Renaissance Day?
Depleted Uranium Weapons
Mitt Romney: A Clintonian Republican
A Checklist for Conservatives
On Torture and Torturers
Pimp of the Nation
Romney is a Jerk
Hypocrisy and its Champions
The Dumb Society
The Men's Taverns of Yesteryear
On Dittoheads!
Let China Sleep
2004 McDebates
Animal Rights Page
US Wealth Distribution Chart
Public Grief, Private Lives



            They say 55 isn’t old…for a cathederal. I am reminded of this when accompanying my 7-year-old son to his little league games, where I am often mistaken for his grandfather. Becoming an old geezer has its advantages though, like getting discounted coffee at McDonald’s, as well as finally being too old to have a midlife crisis. And bringing up a fresh

litter of kids in the 2000’s  has also brought me perspective on today’s parents and how they differ with the parents of yesteryear.


 Hearing reports of assaults and murders at youth sporting events makes me wonder how people’s priorities get so distorted. Still only 2% of parents are jerks; the percentage being a constant over the years, which really means that 98% of parents behave with restraint, consideration, and kindness. Coaches too. But this article is about the 2%.


First on my list of miscreants, losers and jerks are dads who push their kid into sports- even when the kid has no interest- and then berate the kid ( sometimes even publicly)whenever he performs poorly. My older son

tells me about one of his teammates who dreads returning home after going hitless or making a dumb error in a game- because his father throws temper tantrums, and criticizes him. On an unconscious level, this dad is probably responding to some long ago schoolyard injustice or unassimilated drive to seduce all cheerleaders-which compels him toward eruptions of his conflicted unconscious. Or perhaps it’s merely dad’s frustrated ambition to play pro sports, to which I say, give it up, and get yourself a real life instead of making yourself and your kids miserable projecting upon them the bitter emotional fruits of your arrested development.


Another phenomenon, which I don’t remember from yesteryear, is a small but increasing number of people who become coaches so that their own kid can  be – take  your pick-starting pitcher, quarterback,  lead off hitter- even when there are equally capable or better players. It makes you wonder

about what kind of example this sets about fairness. Then there is the parent who argues the umpire’s calls, questions the strategy of the coach and obnoxiously offers advice where it is neither needed nor wanted.


 Ours is a hyper-competitive society. Red Aurbach  said, “Show me a good  loser and I’ll show you a loser”  Vince Lombardi said, “Winning isn’t  everything: it’s the only thing.” But professional sports is not a game, but a business. And these men who play for vicarious gratification of  mass culture are primarily making a living, not engaging in a pastime. The problem is when coaches, parents and players confuse high school and  community sports programs with professional sports. Then they do nothing to subordinate or redirect the power tripping, ego glorifying aspect of sports while missing the larger picture of sports’ potential for personal development. Just look at the growing use of steroids –even among girls. Yet very few of these kids are going on to be professional athletes. The real lessons of sports therefore, are often overlooked and constitute a lost opportunity.


The original idea of sports as a part of educational and community

programs was not to just have a winning team, (what do you win?) but from an ancient idea, probably originating from the Greeks, about a balance between the mind and body. While schools develop intellect, sports can develop character and impart valuable lessons: facing adversity, leadership, courage, winning, working together toward a common goal, and (sorry Red Aurbach) losing- because everybody loses at times. One who  knows how pick himself up from the floor, to brush off defeat, will not crack when the storms of life come -and they always will.


 I have come to the conclusion that the world is a thousand times more wicked and corrupt than I had ever imagined. Being a parent makes you

especially aware of the way the movie, TV and  music industry get their

hooks into kids early and play with their brains, influencing them toward

ignorance, precocious sex, drugs, violence, criminality, suicide, even Satanism. The New World Order wants kids dumbed down and fatherhood deconstructed, with the desired outcome of producing a compliant

generation of service workers, mindless consumers, cannon fodder, and

docile, obedient citizens. I don’t say this out of a sense of pessimism

for I am an optimist, but rather out of dispassionate observation.


Six million kids in America are on anti-depressants. Childhood shouldn’t be a depressing time. I encourage my kids to play sports, to train hard and play to win, but when the game is over- forget it and move on. And if

they choose not to participate, that’s fine too. Youth sports is not war, not a business for entertaining the masses, not a preparation for professional sports, but a pastime, and should be enjoyed.