Last month, Wisconsin's governing body for high school athletics declared that chanting "U-S-A, U-S-A," is unsportsmanlike behavior.
The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association also directed schools to stop fans from booing, or chanting "Air Ball," "Season's Over," "Fundamentals," "Scoreboard," and "Over-Rated."
"Any action directed at opposing teams or their spectators with the intent to taunt, disrespect, distract or entice an unsporting behavior in response is not acceptable sportsmanship," the WIAA wrote in an email obtained by the Post-Crescent. "Student groups, school administrators and event managers should take immediate steps to correct this unsporting behavior."
I should point out that a spokesman for the WIAA told television station WISC that the sportsmanship guidelines are a point of reference and "not a requirement."
"It's up to each school or district to create their own sportsmanship conduct policies and enforcing them with appropriate consequences," the spokesman told the television station.
Wisconsin's football stadiums, basketball arenas and wrestling mats have become safe spaces for the perpetually offended generation.
Vince Lombardi must be rolling over in his grave.
Oh, you should see the 40-page sportsmanship manual complied by the WIAA.
Take, for example, the section that frowns on "booing of any kind."
"If errors in judgment is (sic) made, all are human and we must accept that. Individuals do the best to execute in a way they've been trained," the WIAA wrote.
They also took issue with the "Na Na Na Na/Na Na Na Na/Hey Hey Hey/Goodbye" song. They called it "taunting and disrespectful."
The WIAA found the "U-S-A" chant to be problematic, too—along with "any acronym of derogatory language or innuendo."
Their guidelines became national news after a high school basketball player got in trouble for posting a profane message about the sportsmanship rules on her Twitter account.
Based on national media coverage, her opinion was shared by many. Nevertheless, April was suspended for five games. Her family does not plan on appealing the decision.
Paul Ackley is the athletic director at McFarland High School. He told WISC that he supports the recommendations.
"If a kid gets an answer wrong on the white board, they're not going to start chanting, 'You can't do that,'" he said. "This is not Division I athletics. This is an extension of the classroom and it's education-based."
What in the name of Bear Bryant is going on, Wisconsin?
Granted, you don't want the children hollering out profanities and running around the gym buck-naked. But these guidelines are not so much about sportsmanship as they are about political correctness.
We're talking about high school basketball. It's not a croquet match.
In 2014, former NBA star Dennis Rodman participated in a bizarre basketball game in North Korea. Remember how the fans sat quietly in the stands and only applauded when instructed to by the government?
Take a good look, America. That's the future of high school athletics in the Badger State.
Todd Starnes is host of "Fox News & Commentary," heard on hundreds of radio stations. Sign up for his American Dispatch newsletter, be sure to join his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter. His latest book is The Deplorables' Guide to Making America Great Again.
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