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Sen. Durbin Calls for Lights Out on Esquire Network's Controversial 'Friday Night Tykes'

from Chicago Sun-Times

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is crying foul over Esquire Network's controversial reality show "Friday Night Tykes."

Durbin called on the cable net Thursday to yank the 10-part series from its lineup "because it glorifies a culture of violent competitiveness that can be dangerous for the safety and long term health of children."

The show follows five San Antonio youth football teams — with players as young as 8 years old — on and off the field throughout the 2013 season. For many in the series, which airs at 8 p.m. (Central) on Tuesdays, football is the lifeblood of their community. Winning means everything in this youth league, where the adults grapple with questions like: How much competition is too much? Is the sport safe for young kids? At what price are we pushing them to win?

In a letter to the network's president, Adam Stotsky, Durbin cited instances where football coaches encouraged kids to deliver repeated blows to the head and to play through injury. more

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