ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – After reading my good friend Chris Kerber’s excellent column on Tuesday about parenting or lack thereof. I figured, what the heck, let me put my two cents in on what seems to have become a lost art we call “parenting”.
Over the last week when I’ve had time away from my duties at KMOX I have decided to go watch some of my friends kids, in which some are my godchildren, play softball and baseball. It’s pretty amazing to see how advanced things have become for these kids over the years with all of the amenities right at their fingertips. These ball fields are beautiful and each kid has more than just their own glove. They have their own bat, batting helmet and carrying case for all of their stuff. I mean I never had some of this when I played legion ball, much less as a kid playing ball in grade school.
But on to the game itself, these boys and girls pick up on things pretty quick now. I mean I was watching children from ages 7 to 12 understand where to throw the ball to the cut-off man or a base to get the lead runner. These kids understood the concept of base running. (Maybe the Cardinals should take note). Now granted there were still mistakes on the field. I mean nothing was flawless. There were errors made and base running blunders too, but still pretty impressive for a group of kids. What I found horrific was the actions of some of the coaches and parents during the game. Parents sit in the stands screaming at their kids at the top of their lungs, telling them how to do this or how to do that. Coaches are giving a terse talking to the player (child) about how they made a mistake. Coaches from each team squabbling about how each one of them are cheaters. I mean some of these parents acted like these games were game 7 of the World Series. What great example these “parents” are setting. And now I know why many kids and young adults don’t show respect to anyone anymore. How can they when they watch their parents act like this. What happened to the days when little Johnny made a mistake and you take him to the side and tell him what he was supposed to do, pat him on the back and tell him he’s still doing a good job? What happened to the days when you complimented a player (kid) from another team for doing good? And I’d like to know when did it become out of the norm for a parent not to teach a child and make sure the kids were having fun? When did parents decide that they wanted to push their children into being something instead of letting a kid grow up and be a kid?
I found the actions of these “parents” appalling to the point that I can’t go back and watch these kids play again. What a disgrace. I’m hopeful things will change and I hope it happens soon because I want to watch these kids grow up, play ball and have fun. But for the moment I can’t go back because these “parents” are acting like a bunch of kids.
Scott Warmann is a host on the Sports Hub.