Football, Brain Tissue, Ellen Schwartz discussed on Freakonomics Radio


If you don't follow football at all you've likely heard that it has a huge problem it was really win guys started blowing their brains out and having their you know the brain tissue examined for a degenerative brain disease that's when things started getting pretty eighty that's ellen schwartz and emma journalist and author based in new york the brain disease is called c t e or chronic traumatic encephalopathy if act characterized by definition of a protein caught town uh and that accumulates in our cells and other cells throughout the brain an mckee is and neuropathologist who directs the cte center at boston university school of medicine it starts is very focal problems are abnormalities but then over the decades becomes i'd devastating are logical condition it causes memory loss cognitive changes behavioral changes like aggression impulsively depression and down i can be very disabling with time alan schwartz wrote a hundred and thirty articles for the new york times about concussions or brain trauma in sports primarily football there were two reasons why this blew up in football's face or the nfl's face one is players started dying and were found to have the brain disease okay and then the nfl put up such a fuss saying oh there's nothing happening here we have our scientists who have shown i mean they played the perfect villain we had something the resembled the tobacco industry former players were dying young sometimes by suicide older players were completely losing their faculties and occasionally a current player quit the game young afraid of longterm brain damage i think as far as the nfl goes they're bullies and they have been able to quash every public relations problem in their history whether it's domestic violence recently whether it's steroids whether it's the strikes and lockouts i mean there are games to be played on sunday and everyone forgets by then by this is the one public relations crisis that they have lost all my feelings about sport of definitely evolved the brain researcher in mckee again i was born and raised red outsider green bay wisconsin and my brothers played football in fact i was an absolutely enormous at packer fan and because i think i was raised in such a football century community i have always i had a terrific admiration for football players then she began to study the brains of deceased players at one point i could compartmentalize i could still enjoy.

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