Friday, November 6, 2009

Inclusion on the Football Field

There is all sorts of bad news out there today. You can find it just by flipping on your TV, your radio, or your computer. It's too easy to get run over by all of that and start to think there is nothing right in the world anymore. While pondering what "news" story I should blog about today I wondered if I would find some special needs connection to some of the headline stories out there, but even if I did I wasn't sure I wanted to highlight any of them. As I scrolled through my google reader alerts I bypassed several sad stories. I needed to find some good news for myself and also for you.

I found it.

This story is one that many of us can only hope will be played out in our children's future. You can find text, comments, and video that honors a boy with special needs for his faithful work as the manager of his middle school football team. I don't know how you remember middle school, but I recall it as a place where differences are unwelcome and ostracized. This school, this team does not fit that mold. Perhaps it is due to the strength and mentoring of the coach. Maybe it's the supportive mother. Maybe they are just good kids. No matter what it is you can see in the video how the boys of this team truly accept Matthew and enjoy being with him. I don't think it's magic...I think it is good character on the part of each person in the scenario.

It reminds me of another story I've seen on facebook several times now about a high school basketball team with a similar attitude. You can see that video here. Prepare to cry tears of joy...even if you've seen it before.

These kids, overcoming all obstacles to find a place of acceptance and happiness, are a reminder to all of us that the good is still out there and we need to find it and help it multiply.


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