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Brawl in the Family

Posted on: December 1st, 2011 by Larry

We may not know much about rugby in the United States, but there’s no excuse for a fan running onto the field in defense of his team…even if one of the players involved in a brawl is the fan’s son.

That’s exactly what happened at a recent rugby match in France. The father of a 31-year-old, 6-foot-4, 243-pound professional rugby player ran onto the field to join a brawl between his son’s team and their opponents. See the video.

The father later apologized, explaining that he ‘simply lost it.’

It is unusual to see this kind of parental behavior in defense of an adult child. Unfortunately, there are many examples of parents coming to blows with referees, coaches and other parents at youth sporting events.

Obviously such role modeling sends the wrong message to children. And yet, most parents tell their children that fighting is wrong and that they should come to them if they were being bullied or picked on.

So, where does one draw the line?

  • When should a parent let a child fight his or her own battles?
  • We see fights break out in hockey all the time and sometimes in other sports. Is that okay? Do sports figures have a responsibility to be role models?
  • Have you ever felt there was no way to settle something unless it was with fists?   How did that work out?