Girl Banned from Playing Football

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A Catholic-youth football league in Philadelphia finds itself in the middle of a controversy. After allowing a female player to participate for five years, the Archdiocese has now decided to bar her from taking the field.

11-year-old Caroline Pla has been suiting up for football since kindergarten, but her playing time with the Catholic Youth Organization ended after last season. The archdiocese of Philadelphia enforced its ‘boy’s only’ policy for football, sidelining the all-star guard and defensive end.

The media blitz and petition haven’t swayed the archdiocese. In a statement it said in part, “traditionally football is a boys only sport due to its full contact nature. Most parents and players have preferred this; some now disagree.”

A panel selected by the archdiocese will review the rule with a decision expected by mid-March.


  • Matt

    Interesting topic… but I would encourage my daughter to try other sports. Football is a violent sport. As boys and girls progress through there adolescences the gap in strength and size begins to get further and further apart. I am sure some girls can hang and even outperform boys between 5-15 years old. At that age the sport is not as violent. Once you start talking about 8th grade and beyond the sport tends to separate the weak from the strong. And I am talking about boys. I played football from 2nd grade through high school. I know firsthand how violent the sport becomes as boys get older. I just would not want my daughter exposed to it.

  • William

    isnt it nice for you to have that choice? This kid does not. Its been taken away by an organization that refuses to look at issues objectively. It doesnt seem like they want to mandate that girls play. They want a kid to have a chance to play if he/she is capable. Appears like another pretty easy issue made overly complicated by the catholics….

  • HowIgnorantRU?

    I'm going to wait for more info by the archdiocese and his panel. I CAN assume that the archdiocese is a male, right? Wonder what the decision would be if the child was born hermaphrodite, by God's will? Heh, that puts it into a different perspective.

  • Ironman915

    If she wants to play…let her…she is padded up and protecting her vital areas…she will find other interests as tie progresses. But for now, let her have fun. Must we stomp on all the kids hopes and dreams?

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