This week a Morris County High School passed a new rule that says that for their cheerleading squad, everyone makes the team or no one does. One parent whose child did not make the squad raised a fuss with thees3 school officials, and the athletic director caved in and changed the policy. The policy is now “inclusive”.
And this is the problem with schools, and the problem with everyone feeling entitled. You can use this scenario in anything to see the folly in it.
Everyone who goes out for the NFL, MBL, NHL, etc, should make the team. Everyone who runs for congress should be in congress. Everyone who wants to be a doctor should be one, and you could fill a thousand pages with dumb examples.
What did everyone learn here? The parent did not accept that her little girl was not chosen. Instead of teaching her daughter the valuable lessons of working even harder next time, or of perhaps choosing another activity in which she may be better suited to excel, she taught her daughter to make everyone else lose for her self-centered interests.
She taught her daughter to be a bad loser, and that whining wins. She demeaned her daughter and the others on the team who rightfully won a spot due to their talent, their efforts and their tryout performance. She has probably made her daughter a target of ridicule and dislike by other students and other parents.
The girls who actually earned a place on the team feel angry and let down by their athletic director, their school, and their classmate. Of what value is it to practice, to spend long hours perfecting a skill, only to have everyone be included? What value is there in doing your best, becoming your best?
The school officials have taught students that there is no value in hard work, practice, effort, and striving to be the best. That is the antithesis of what our children should be learning. Everyone is not equal in all things, some excel in sports, some excel in mathematics, or music or auto shop, or language. We are not all the same and that is the magic sauce that makes the world such a beautiful and diverse place.
Everyone does not deserve a trophy, I am sorry to say. Watching a baseball player launch a baseball over the center field wall is a beautiful thing. It makes us all feel good, proud, excited. If everyone who tried out made the team, the game would be a bore and somewhat of a joke.
Making cheerleading, or any school activity, sport, contest, all-inclusive is exactly the wrong way to teach our kids to strive to be the best. Why should they when there is no recognition, no reward for the effort? Those that excel at spelling, math, sports, music, speech, technology, or whatever their special talent is, should be held up and recognized and rewarded for their unique talents and their hard work.
We cannot be raising wusses and whiners, we need to be raising people who are self-confident and aspire to succeed in life because it means something to succeed. It is an earned right to be recognized for being among the best at something, whatever that something is.
I feel badly for the young girl whose mom made the fuss. She made her daughter’s life harder and taught her the very worst of lessons. I am sad for the girls who did earn their way onto the cheerleading team, whose efforts were diminished and discarded in favor of political correctness and intimidation. I hope that the officials at Morris County School, get some backbone and do the right thing by all students, and reverse this ridiculous and harmful rule. Taking the winning spirit, the competitive spirit out of these students is just not acceptable, and the lesson they are teaching is that whining wins, and hard work has no value.