Just a few moments ago I was running on the treadmill at the local YMCA. While I was running, I had the luxury of watching a news program. The title of the news program was, “Choking Game: A Deadly Trend.”
Personally, this is the first time that I heard about the game. Basically, the choking game is when someone personally chokes themselves or allows a friend to choke them. The person is choked until they pass out and lose consciousness.
After shaking my head in disbelief, I was curious to know why someone would do such a thing. If anyone has ever choked before, such as I have, it doesn’t produce such a good feeling. Also, I would not consider someone a good friend that would get a kick out of choking me.
On the news program, they interviewed a handful of youth and their parents. You can see the program at the following link (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/07/28/earlyshow/main712411.shtml). From what I gathered, some of the youth that were not peer pressured into being choked, enjoyed obtaining the sensation of losing oxygen to their brain. What they probably overlooked is that the sensation was directly associated with destroying their brain cells and becoming brain dead, especially over a period of continual choking. Not only are brain cells destroyed and damaged, over 250 children and youth die annually due to the choking game.
What personally disturbed me the most and caused my face to grow red with anger was that one of the parents interviewed did not realize the dangers associated with being choked. Not only was this the case, but one of the youth commented that they and their friends would choke each other in school and the teachers would merely walk by without a care. Of course, I will take into consideration that this youth may have over exaggerated, but then again, maybe not? Oh, and get this, one youth from the program said that his Youth Pastor showed him how to play the game! Well, I’m glad that I didn’t see this statement on my job description, “Searching for a candidate with large hands and a strong grip.”
Now, how could someone not be aware of the dangers associated with choking and passing out? That is the one the dumbest things that I have ever heard. Come on, if I was sitting back and watching my child be choked, rather it was by their own hands, the hands of someone else, or a foreign object, such as a piece of candy, I wouldn’t be comfortably sitting back in my chair watching them choke as if it didn’t matter and did not have any harmful side affects. I would get up and move with the “quickness” to help them quite choking. Honestly, how could anyone associate being choked, losing oxygen, and eventually passing out, or dying, not a dangerous thing? You decide.
Before I say anything else, because I am growing angrier by the moment, parents, guardians, children, and youth need to be aware of the dangers associated with the “choking game.” Parents and guardians in particular need to be involved in the life of their children, irrespective of their age, and know if they have played or been pressured to play the choking game. If so, you need to inform them of the dangers, your displeasure, and the wrath that they will face from you if you hear or catch them doing it. Also, you will need to notify the parents and/or guardians of their friends that have been playing the game as well. Finally, you may need to speak with school staff to discuss this issue.
Finally, youth, listen up, don’t be fooled to think that this is just some fun and innocent game that will give you a quick thrill. Don’t be so easily duped into believing this is a cool thing, and don’t be worried about your peer acceptance. This is a game that is deadly and can have tremendous consequences. After playing this game, you might not happen to wake back up from it.