The good news, I suppose, is that there are already 5,000 girls who play organized football — varsity football! — in U.S. schools. The bad news is that they’re almost all in Florida (the rest are in Alaska), meaning girls football is not very widespread.
Also? They’re playing flag football, which I suppose is both good and bad news. The good news there being that these girls might be able to avoid rampant concussions suffered by male football players at all levels. The bad news is that flag football is kind of football lite.
But who cares, right? Another sport for girls to play. Another reason to rethink assumptions about how girls would like to spend their time and energy.
Writing for Salon, Anna Clark gives us all the ins and outs of whether flag football is a good thing and what people are saying about girls playing it. If you’re excited about it, don’t read the comments because they’re ever so degrading to girls and women athletes.
Personally, I loved flag football as a kid and was really pretty good at it. I’d love for my girls to play. They don’t care for soccer but love the idea of football (they’re kind of into the tackling, which would get them DQ’d but whatever). I also really hate attitudes that downplay the fun in watching women’s sports, which I find far more interesting to watch than men’s. Now there’s a Superbowl I’d like to watch for more than just the ads.
Would you let your daughter go out for football? Would you support your school’s girls’ football team?