WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — While President Barack Obama is a big football fan, he said Sunday that he was not sure he would let a son, if he had one, play the game.
Obama, who has two daughters, said he would “have to think long and hard” before letting him play because of the physical toll the game takes.
“I think that those of us who love the sport are going to have to wrestle with the fact that it will probably change gradually to try to reduce some of the violence,” Obama told The New Republic.
“In some cases, that may make it a little bit less exciting, but it will be a whole lot better for the players, and those of us who are fans maybe won’t have to examine our consciences quite as much.”
The comments came as part of a sit-down interview with Chris Hughes of The New Republic. The interview covered multiple issues. Obama told Hughes he worries more about college players than he does about those in the NFL.
“The NFL players have a union, they’re grown men, they can make some of these decisions on their own, and most of them are well-compensated for the violence they do to their bodies,” Obama said. “You read some of these stories about college players who undergo some of these same problems with concussions and so forth and then have nothing to fall back on. That’s something that I’d like to see the NCAA think about.”
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello responded Sunday, “We have no higher priority than player health and safety at all levels of the game.”
If you had a son, would you let him play football? If you do have a son, does he play football? You may share your thoughts in our comments section below…
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