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The Special Olympics

Abstract: The Special Olympics not only give special athletes athletic skills, they offer more opportunity, encouragement, and dexterity to survive in society than the public school system alone. To understand the differences and similarities between handicapped athletes and their non-handicap peers is the first step in creating a program that best meets the child’s needs. There were no community programs that catered to the mentally and physically challenged, so Eunice Kennedy-Shriver created “special games” in her back yard for her handicapped child. Shriver established the Special Olympics in 1968. Today there are more than one million special athletes competing in 140 countries. There are some problems with relying on the public school system to seek a child’s full potential in the special education programs. The Special Olympics, however, have found an effective method of preparing children, teens, and adults for society through sport. The diverse selection of sports, their rules, and physical demands, is an advantage when there is a huge range of disabilities. There is a program offered for almost everyone. People who benefit from these games range from the athletes themselves, the officials, coaches, caregivers, parents, to the spectators and on-site first aid staff. Mrs. Kennedy-Shriver said this in regard to special athletes, “through sports, they can realize their potential for growth.” Over and over this fantastic organization has demonstrated integrity, good sportsmanship, and goal oriented programs that work!

People who have become involved in sports and recreation develop a larger group of friends, receive more social support, and are more likely to engage in conversation with o…

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…creation Magazine Oct. 1985: 58-62.

“Special Needs kids run program with star power.” National Education Association Today Mar.2001: 30.

Special Olympics, Inc. Athletes for Outreach Training Notebook. Washington D.C. 1994.

Stanglin, Douglas., Vic Sussman. “Special Smiles.” U.S. News

Professional Sports – Free Agency is Causing the Slow Death of Baseball

Free Agency is Causing the Slow Death of Baseball

What ever happened to the old days? This is a comment that my Dad and Grandpa are always saying when it comes to major league baseball in this era. Like clockwork, at the beginning of every baseball season my Dad says, “Every year my team has all new faces. How am I supposed to root for this team if I don’t even know who is playing for them.” Now, more than ever, this comment is true. It is true because of free agency in baseball. Free agency is destroying the fabric of the baseball blanket in America. This is the same blanket that many of us sports fans have grown up with and have drawn accustomed too. Baseball is our national pastime. If something is not done to change free agency in baseball it may not remain our national heritage in the future. Baseball is the sport that every kid growing up has a dream to play. These same kids also look at major league baseball players as their role models. If free agency runs the same course that it has been running it will destroy baseball. If nothing is done to change free agency all that we, as baseball fans, will remember baseball as is a pastime.

According to Rick Reilly, a freelance writer for sports magazines, free agency (which he broadly defines as an athlete’s ability to offer his services on the open market to the highest bidder,) is a threat to baseball (108). However, free agency does have a few restrictions that do not allow just any player to file for it. A player with zero to three years of experience must negotiate his salary with club management; a player with more than three but less than six full years in the majors has an option of submitting a salary dispute to an independent arbitrator; and a player with si…

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…blanket that fans of the sport have become attached to like a security blanket. What free agency is doing to baseball should not be tolerated by us, the fans. It should not even be tolerated by anyone associated with the sport. Free agency it could end up destroying the future thoughts and dreams of baseball fans yet to come. If something is not done to free agency in baseball, which is considered our national pastime, will not be considered that by future generations to come.

Works Cited

Gelin, Dana. ” Fish Tale.” Sports Illustrate Commemorative Issue 1997: 28- 30.

Kurkjian, Tim. “Blueprint For Success.” Sports Illustrated Commemorative Issue 1997: 16-19.

Reilly, Rick. “Fishing For Marlin Fans.” Sports Illustrated March 9, 1998: 108

Worsnop, Richard L. “Pro Sports Big Challenge.” Editorial Research Reports 9 Feb. 1990, Vol. 1, No. 6, pp. 82-94

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