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Opinion

Cheerleading gone wild

SoVaNow.com / February 11, 2016
Dear Viewpiont:

What do you think about when you hear about Friday night high school football games, high school basketball games, pep rallies, and showing school spirit?

The answer to this question can vary but most likely the most common answer is high school athletes, students, and fans having fun.

However, after my observation of a high school boys’ basketball game on Wednesday, Feb. 3, between the Halifax County High School and Magna Vista High School in Ridgeway, I feel a lot of athletes, students, and fans have a new answer to the above question which is embarrassing and disgraceful.

As a Magna Vista High School supporter I attended this game and I witnessed high school cheerleaders from Halifax County High School perform in such a manner that it was impossible for any player, student, or fan to say they had a fun-filled time.

Being a former cheerleader and cheerleading coach myself, I totally support cheerleading because they are to show school spirit while supporting the competitive sporting events of the school. However, at this game I personally feel the cheerleaders of Halifax County High School came with their own agenda which was to have a battle against the Magna Vista High School cheerleaders.

Cheerleaders should act as liaisons between the spectators and the playing team by incorporating cheers, dances, and other crowd involvement techniques. From the sideline chants, end of quarter chants, and the halftime performance by the Halifax County High School cheerleaders their focus was totally on disrespecting the Magna Vista High School cheerleaders.

I patiently watched the sideline chants and end of quarter chants that were full of gyrating moves trying to overcome the disrespect but after the halftime performance of the high kicks which resemble kickboxing I began to wonder if I was really at a high school game or a MMA show or an adult entertainment show.

Being that cheerleaders are also representatives of the school and community they should be wholesome examples of a student athlete and what I saw at this game was totally embarrassing and disrespectful to everyone. I waited to hear GO COMETS GO! or GO COMETS BEAT THE WARRIORS and I never heard anything near supporting their players who were giving their 100 percent on the court or their fans who were cheering on the players.

And what really surprised me is that apparently this is the norm for them because there was an adult present in the stands that seemed to be acting as their sponsor or coach and she never addressed this behavior until a Magna Vista parent spoke to our Athletic Director about the inappropriate behavior. After that he addressed the sponsor/coach and cheerleaders and I then saw her give a “cut it signal” to the Halifax cheerleaders to not perform a certain chant on the sideline.

So in response to this “adult style performance” the Magna Vista cheerleaders tried to retaliate with louder chants and some head jerking but they never gyrated or showed any violent kickboxing moves.

I totally understand that we are in the 21st century now so cheerleading moves have changed but I never imagined high school cheerleading could go so wild. I have a 6 year old son who was present and, of course, he was full of questions that I had to try to answer in a decent manner.

Are cheerleaders at high school games getting too explicit that my six year old son can’t come and enjoy a basketball game? Will I have to cover up his eyes at these games?

What happens to being good at what you do but letting your good works speak for you instead of your attitudes and your seductive body movements? What happened to cheering on your team and showing school spirit in a classy way?

From checking the scoreboard last night Halifax neither Magna Vista received any points from the battle between the cheerleaders.

So let’s keep it clean and classy, ladies.

Cynthia Jeffress, Martinsville





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