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Ian Lind • Now online daily from Old Kahala

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School violence met by “helmets on, heads down” policy

November 5th, 2012 · 17 Comments

Did you happen to catch the report on KHON last night regarding injuries sustained in a rock throwing incdent as school buses were leaving a JV football game at Campbell High School (“Rock thrown at school bus after championship football game“).

It wasn’t the incident itself that caught my attention. It was the visiting coach’s description of their standard procedure.

[Waianae head coach Fai] Lave believes it was teenagers who threw the rock, but unsure if they attend Campbell High School.

He says, it’s normal procedure for teams to have a safety plan when leaving away games.

“We prepare for that kind stuff situations like this where we board the bus and we always put our helmets on before we leave the schools and you know put your heads down until we get on the freeway,” said Lave.

The athletic director at Campbell High School issued a statement saying:

“It’s very unfortunate that this incident occurred. Every school has a safety plan in place which includes all athletic activities on our campus. The safety plan includes police escorting the visiting football team off campus.

Should we really be accepting this level of violence as “normal” in interscholastic athletics? What programs has the DOE put in place to deal with this beyond the “helmets on and heads down” approach? Is this really being taken seriously or just left up to the coaches to deal with? What’s going on?! Perhaps the legislature needs to drill down into the problem and the responses?

Tags: Education · Politics

17 responses so far ↓

  • 1 aikea808 // Nov 5, 2012 at 9:06 am

    Oh come on, Ian. People have been throwing rocks, etc. @ opposing teams for decades. At least now they have a safety plan. When I was in school, none existed. There were a lot more fights, too. That’s unfortunately the nature of competitive sports (and politics, etc.) & simple-minded folks.

  • 2 kalaheo1 // Nov 5, 2012 at 9:53 am

    I agree. When I was in high school on the mainland in the early 80’s, our team bus got nailed by rock through the window. It was pretty danged dramatic with glass all over the place, and the mild mannered youngster who took the brunt of it was pretty nicked up.

    Realistically, it takes only one complete dumbass to throw a rock and cause such a huge and potentially catastrophic mess.

    It never occurred to us back then to wear helmets and duck our heads on the way out and I was initially struck, as were you, by the implied barbarism and lack of civility. Then I thought, huh, those safety measures were a pretty good idea after all.

  • 3 t // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:11 am

    geez, ian, what’s wrong with you? preparing for people to throw rocks at a school bus is perfectly normal…….. in Central Africa. o.O

  • 4 Black Kettle // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:47 am

    I agree with you completely Ian. I graduated from a west coast school in the mid 80’s and played on both basketball and football teams. I was as shocked as you when I watched that newscast to learn what the coach described as “SOP” for visiting teams. You might have been throwing rocks at visiting teams buses decades ago in the “Aloha” state but where I grew up things like that just didn’t happen. Seriously?? Police escort and assume the crash position until on the freeway??? Wow.

  • 5 NoWay // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:58 am

    sorry but your rationale is wrong… this behavior is unacceptable in a civil society

  • 6 Mark // Nov 5, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    Please, sports are ritualized warfare. Politics too is now conducted this way. Is it any surprise that real world situations require safety precautions of a war zone? Go to places like Iraq and see what precautions US corporate foreign policy requires of youth around the world. Or go to major cities and survey street gang conducts for protocol, territory and survival. Sports are just the way the “civilized” non-poor train themselves to play for corporate teams and codify their violence into business and military hierarchy, strategy and goals. Everybody else always has there “helmets on and heads down”.

  • 7 Michael in Waikiki // Nov 5, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    WHO pays for all of the dents, scratches, and broken glass on the busses?

    Who pays for the medical bills of an injured student player?

    And if police are needed who pays for them?

    Ian raises a good point. Why is such behavior condoned and accepted?

  • 8 FatJeff // Nov 5, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    These kinds incidents go way way back. Duck & cover was SOP back when I played. Bad form? You bet, but old as the hills (or me)-Class of 1980

  • 9 t // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:11 pm

    lamest excuse on the planet? best illustration of getting all defensive?

    “dat’s da way it’s been done!”

  • 10 Blaine // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    Nothing has changed from the late ’60s. In those days, The Aiea bus would get stoned when leaving Nanakuli or Wai’anae, and no one was surprised when those schools were stoned while leaving Aiea. Not condoning it, but just pointing out that nothing new is going on here.

  • 11 Blaine // Nov 5, 2012 at 10:35 pm

    Nothing has changed from the late ’60s. In those days, The Aiea bus would get stoned when leaving Nanakuli or Wai’anae, and no one was surprised when those schools were stoned while leaving Aiea. Not condoning it, but just pointing out that nothing new is going on here. Our plan was, students leave early 4th quarter, get on the bus, pull your jacket over your head and duck down, head between your knees. We were used to it, as this was similar to the nuclear drills we conducted in our classrooms.

  • 12 ulu // Nov 5, 2012 at 11:32 pm

    Sorry but on the mainland, the cops would be there to scare the rock throwing moons straight.

    Can someone please explain why we have football in high school or UH?

  • 13 Black Kettle // Nov 6, 2012 at 7:05 am

    I will say it again….the “ALOHA” state cracks me up. We pull that word out so loosely but in reality, people are nice everywhere and people are morons everywhere. We have nothing special if this behavior is the “norm” and by the posts here….it is. But I’m not surprised, Hawaii sports fans just cannot tolerate cheering for the opposing team, no matter what level, no matter what sport. Just look at Aloha stadium during the UH football games. You Tube is full of fights in the stands cuz someone is offended at cheering for the other team. This doesn’t happen at other D1 schools so perhaps you are all correct, been a part of the local culture for decades….it’s “normal”. What a shame.

  • 14 Patty // Nov 6, 2012 at 7:27 am

    I am appalled! Time to remove football as a sport in our schools and community. It appears to promote violence and disrespect

  • 15 Fat Jeff // Nov 6, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Black Kettle: To clarify, my experience was in Northern Kentucky and then South Florida. Stoning the bus is a universal teenage act of rebellion/school pride.

    No fights at other D1 school games? Sheltered much?

  • 16 Black Kettle // Nov 7, 2012 at 8:15 am

    So Fat man you really think the fights you see at every UH football game scattered throughout the stands is “normal” and happens like that at other schools?? Do you even go to the games?? And btw, Aloha Stadium is one of a very small few that still sells beer…thus the fights.

  • 17 Dion // Nov 8, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown of the Labor Party in the UK has been blind in one eye since high school from getting kicked in the head during a rugby game. As prime minister, he began to go blind in the other eye from the same injury, and required brain surgery. This is someone who went to elite schools and is an extremely civilized man. Moreover, there’s a saying in Britain, that “Rugby is a thugs game played by gentlemen; soccer is a gentleman’s game played by thugs.” So there is this mix of barbarism and civility spread throughout every level of every society. (Ever deal with a group of professors?….)

    In a way, this post reminds me of Ian’s tribute to the passing of a friend of his, a professor of women’s studies at UHM. Reading about her dedication to animal rescue and so forth, I thought, “Here’s a rare civilized and humane being….”

    But I wonder if Ian realizes just how rare that kind of civility and humanity is. For example, Ian seems enthusiastic about forcing everyone to vote, since if more people vote we will supposedly have more democracy. I fear that if more people vote, we would have Mufi Hannemann as Governor For Life.

    Ian Lind and his family and friends are civilized, but they are among the very few, and they might not know that….

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