Lacrosse Seniors Banned From Team and State Championship Over Picture Smoking Cigars At Graduation

article-2651530-1E8DAEBA00000578-45_634x451There is a controversy in Massachusetts where two high school seniors have been kicked off their lacrosse team (and will be barred from the state championship) because they were photographed smoking victory cigars at their graduation ceremony. Here is the interesting twist. The school acknowledges that players were not in violation of state law, but will be barred under a Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association rule on drugs and alcohol.

The MIAA handbook states

From the earliest fall practice date, to the conclusion of the academic year or final athletic event (whichever is latest), a student shall not, regardless of the quantity, use, consume, possess, buy/sell, or give away any beverage containing alcohol; any tobacco product(including e-cigarettes); marijuana; steroids; or any controlled substance. This policy includes products such as “NA or near beer”. It is not a violation for a student to be in possession of a legally defined drug specifically prescribed for the student’s own use by his/her doctor.

However, state law allows for anyone over 18 to smoke, though some towns recently moved to increase that age limit.

Tobacco is still a lawful product and it is not a product that endangers other players like alcohol or illegal drugs. It is also a product that, while clearly unhealthy, does not necessarily endanger the 18 and older players.

I find smoking highly unpleasant and I am astonished that people still smoke. However, I find the line here rather uncertain given the legality of the practice. These students were only smoking cigars, a traditional way of celebrating an occasion. It is not even clear that they are regular smokers. I would feel the same way about a picture of an 18-year-old taking a sip of champagne. While illegal, it is a common allowance among parents. In this way, it is not even unlawful.

I recognize that an association can impose any rules as a precondition for participants so long as it is not itself unlawful. However, this seems a bit harsh to me. This is not only a heavy sanction for these teenagers but could impact their college plans. The fact that a teenager accepted a cigar at a celebration seems pretty minor. I expect that plenty of athletes have such moments but are fortunate enough not to end up on the cover of the local paper.

What do you think?

Source: Boston

38 thoughts on “Lacrosse Seniors Banned From Team and State Championship Over Picture Smoking Cigars At Graduation”

  1. ““Smoke em if ya gottem.” So said John Wayne to the troops as they stopped for a rest in the Nam jungles in the movie The Green Berets.”

    My boot camp commander used to say that at most rest breaks (’62-’63). So I guess he was in the pay of the tobacco companies too. They are insidious.

    Re: marijuana Look up – Dennis Hill biochemist cancer – or – Dr. Christina Sanchez molecular biologist cancer

  2. Mark Twain on Nicotine Nannies

    The Moral Statistician

    Originally published in Sketches, Old and New, 1893

    I don’t want any of your statistics; I took your whole batch and lit my pipe with it.

    I hate your kind of people. You are always ciphering out how much a man’s health is injured, and how much his intellect is impaired, and how many pitiful dollars and cents he wastes in the course of ninety-two years’ indulgence in the fatal practice of smoking; and in the equally fatal practice of drinking coffee; and in playing billiards occasionally; and in taking a glass of wine at dinner, etc. etc. And you are always figuring out how many women have been burned to death because of the dangerous fashion of wearing expansive hoops, etc. etc. You never see more than one side of the question.

    You are blind to the fact that most old men in America smoke and drink coffee, although, according to your theory, they ought to have died young; and that hearty old Englishmen drink wine and survive it, and portly old Dutchmen both drink and smoke freely, and yet grow older and fatter all the time. And you never try to find out how much solid comfort, relaxation, and enjoyment a man derives from smoking in the course of a lifetime (which is worth ten times the money he would save by letting it alone), nor the appalling aggregate of happiness lost in a lifetime by your kind of people from not smoking. Of course you can save money by denying yourself all those little vicious enjoyments for fifty years; but then what can you do with it? What use can you put it to? Money can’t save your infinitesimal soul. All the use that money can be put to is to purchase comfort and enjoyment in this life; therefore, as you are an enemy to comfort and enjoyment where is the use of accumulating cash?

    It won’t do for you to say that you can use it to better purpose in furnishing a good table, and in charities, and in supporting tract societies, because you know yourself that you people who have no petty vices are never known to give away a cent, and that you stint yourselves so in the matter of food that you are always feeble and hungry. And you never dare to laugh in the daytime for fear some poor wretch, seeing you in a good humor, will try to borrow a dollar of you; and in church you are always down on your knees, with your ears buried in the cushion, when the contribution-box comes around; and you never give the revenue officers a full statement of your income.

    Now you know all these things yourself, don’t you? Very well, then, what is the use of your stringing out your miserable lives to a lean and withered old age? What is the use of your saving money that is so utterly worthless to you? In a word, why don’t you go off somewhere and die, and not be always trying to seduce people into becoming as ornery and unlovable as you are yourselves, by your villainous “moral statistics”?

    Now, I don’t approve of dissipation, and I don’t indulge in it either; but I haven’t a particle of confidence in a man who has no redeeming petty vices. And so I don’t want to hear from you any more. I think you are the very same man who read me a long lecture last week about the degrading vice of smoking cigars, and then came back, in my absence, with your reprehensible fire-proof gloves on, and carried off my beautiful parlor stove.

  3. When I was a student I would have said, ban me from playing lacrosse your loss not mine, if I choose to smoke that is my liberty, petty idiots make life very unpleasant, rejoice in getting out of the clutches of such a toady people who are total fakes. are equally deceptive humbugs and pretenders who hope to score advantage by acting like something they’re not.

  4. “Smoke em if ya gottem.” So said John Wayne to the troops as they stopped for a rest in the Nam jungles in the movie The Green Berets. John was paid by the tobacco companies to promote tobacco in the movie. The right wing paid for the promotion of the war in that movie. Most of the folks who smoke at a young age die at a young age. The tobacco companies get you hooked when you are young and dumb. In forty years these two dimwits can be shown their photos as they lie in their death beds “fighting cancer”.

    1. Al –

      “Smoke em if ya gottem.” So said John Wayne to the troops as they stopped for a rest in the Nam jungles in the movie The Green Berets. John was paid by the tobacco companies to promote tobacco in the movie. The right wing paid for the promotion of the war in that movie.

      You want to back this up with some facts?

  5. Now everything is prohibited except that which is required. Hahahah! Most of us richly deserve this because we don’t give one damn about our Bill of Rights or our Constitution any more.

  6. The 26th Amendment gives a citizen the right to vote at age 18. They are adults. 18 up and out. But the tobacco thing. Do their daddies smoke? Do they know that tobacco will kill them if they are in the habit? We are not talking about nuns when we discuss this particular habit. Next year the grads from some school in Washington State will be smoking joints at their graduation. Far better than tobacco.

    1. Barkingdog – if they are part of the baseball team and in NCAA tournaments, they cannot be smoking or ingesting pot. Everybody but the athletes get to toke up.

  7. Nick, their high school state championship game was scheduled after their graduation. So, they will in fact likely miss the biggest game of their high school sports career.

  8. david, thanks for the info re: punishment for transgressions. They seem reasonable to me. If the championship game means anything to the seniors they should play by the rules. Isn’t that one of the objectives of team sports?

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