First came the knee-jerk reaction. Then, the voice of reason was sounded.
And thank goodness that voice belonged to Marty Hickman, executive director of the Illinois High School Association, the body that governs games played by our children.
Hickman issued a statement on Wednesday in response to the Kentucky High School Athletic Association’s move to ban postgame handshakes following games and meets in baseball, basketball, football, soccer, softball, volleyball and wrestling.
The move in Kentucky followed on the heels of more than 20 fights and other altercations over the past three years, according to a CBSSports.com report.
“The IHSA believes that the postgame handshake is a valuable tradition that helps provide perspective to participants that the value of participation is more important than the outcome of the event,” Hickman said. “We have no doubt that our young people, coaches and officials have the integrity and maturity necessary to carry on this practice.
“It is, and will continue to be, a symbol of sportsmanship in high school sports in Illinois and we believe it is widely supported by our principals and athletic administrators. Former IHSA administrator H.V. Porter wrote in 1939 that ‘sportsmanship is largely a matter of habit’ and his words still ring true today.”
Thank you, Marty, for standing up to be heard on this issue, one that should not be dismissed lightly. It is my belief banning the postgame handshake is tantamount to letting inmates run the insane asylum. Or should I say letting the Kentucky moonshiners have their way?
Headlines: Our Newsletter Overfloweth
- What Section of Town Does the Creative Class Live In?
- Heating Your Home to Cost More This Winter
- Joliet Krokodil Victims: Young, Middle-Class & Female, Doctor Says
- Homestead’s Rooftop Staying Open for Year-Round Dining
- Surrounded by Apples? Time to Make Apple Pie
- Big Security Changes at Chicago Marathon