A controversial bill passing its way through the Maryland branches of state legislature was officially deemed dead on arrival, killing off the chance to put Maryland at the front of the queue when it comes to youth sports safety.
As reported by the Baltimore Sun, the Maryland House of Delegates officially rejected a bill that aimed to ban tackle football and the heading of soccer balls before high school before it was brought up for discussion. The measure — which was drafted by Howard County Democrat Del. Terri Hill — was blocked in the Ways and Means Committee, perhaps on the ground that it was considered miscategorized as a “public health” bill.
Still, for the bill to get as far as it did is an accomplishment in itself. According to the Sun, some 25 of the 31 witnesses who testified before the Ways and Means Committee voted against the measure. That was enough to kill off any momentum behind the bill, not that the man who introduced it was left crestfallen.
“I really did not expect it to pass, but I think it’s a conversation we have to have and I don’t think the conversation is over,” Hill told the Sun. “Culturally we love football, I love football. It’s difficult to appreciate that something we really enjoy — with clear benefits to our kids — may be hurting them without our knowledge.
“I don’t know what the future holds. I’m willing to have a conversation: where can we make things safe.”