Shelly Miller, a father in Indiana pummelled an assistant coach into a state of unconsciousness because his daughter was ordered to run laps after fighting with a fellow player. Wynter Goodwin, a friend of the father, defended him, incredulously saying:
“If the coach is [expletive] with your kid, what are you to do? You can’t talk to him.”
You can’t talk to him? Really?
The media coverage indicates the father didn’t speak to the assistant coach at all, just struck him in the face, knocking the man to the ground. Then he climbed atop him and continued to beat him until the senior coach, Robert Johnson, pulled him off.
Not hard to imagine a man losing his temper, rushing to judgment, striking out without thinking. What’s more difficult to comprehend is its acceptance as normal by his friends. Somehow, it’s normal that young people be allowed to fight in school, that young people not be disciplined by their elders, that authority be challenged not with words but with fists, that you can’t talk.