The Bolton High Saga

I understand that high school football is a truly sensitive subject around these parts. Some schools have fans who may have never been a student at the school. Other schools have boosters that come from all over the country just to share their views on what the team should or didn't do. After reading the Commercial Appeal message board for a little while, I saw quite clearly that this issue with Bolton has caused so much controversy that people literally got into a cyber-fight about it.

I will tell you what I think...well, you knew I was going to do that because I am a blogger. Bloggers tend to tell people what they think all the time. Every now and then, people agree..other times, people do what they did on the Commercial Appeal website...dissent.

I would like to tell you that the student's parent has not done anything new. I have known many parents who have used a friend or relative's address in a better area to get their children into a better school. Fortunately, I had an optional transfer which meant that in spite of living near struggling schools, I was given an opportunity to go to a school that had what I needed and wanted. I'm not bragging when I say that, but I am getting to this point--what do you do when you want your child in a better school and don't have the optional (or sibling) transfer on your side??? You do what that student's parent did.

Personally, I don't like the fact that the media has released the student's name for the entire school to ridicule and blame him for the wrongdoing of his parents. At the time of this writing, I have not read one article that named the parent who forged the documents. I know the student's name, but I am abstaining from saying it because I believe he has enough to deal with.
Bolton's punishment for that infraction made them forfeit the nine games he played in. That punishment means that they are completely out of the running for the playoffs. According to the many angry posters on the Commercial Appeal site, there is a school that is completely broken about what happened. What I haven't heard is whether or not there has been any acts of disrespect to the student. I haven't heard if there would be anything done to the parent either. I think the parent should be punished in some kind of way if it turns out that they forged or doctored any documents. In one way, it's one thing to say that you live with your Grandmother to go to a good school, but it's a different thing if you take an MLGW bill, scan it, and make it say what it needs to say.

I hope that this incident doesn't damage the athletes' morale. I know it's low, but I hope it's not destroyed. I hope the students don't take their frustration out on the player. I read a posting on CommercialAppeal.com that mentioned him attending a dance "as if he didn't do anything". Actually, he didn't do anything. I guess a parent will do whatever needs to be done to get their child into a good school or program. My mother put up with the daily traffic jams and almost 45 minutes of driving for me to attend White Station High. Even though she was tired from work the night before, she thought it was nothing because I was learning, thriving, and just plain happy. I read that the student transferred from Craigmont. Maybe his parents felt that they would do whatever they had to do to get him away from that school to a place they felt was better.

If anyone from Bolton reads this, I want them to know that this will pass. It's messed up, as a matter of fact, it's effed up. Don't take it out on the student, don't give up, and most of all DON'T TAKE IT OUT ON THE STUDENT! I know I said that more than once already, but I'm serious. It's not fair that the TSSAA handed down that ruling, but they're only following the rules. You should understand and do what you can to uplift the team.

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