Louise Taylor of The Guardian reported on the use of children in the transport of pyrotechnic devices in Premier League [EPL] matches. The report was based on a survey ordered by the EPL after various incidents of this nature.
The study revealed an incident of an eight year old boy bringing such devices to an EPL match and giving them to adults. It is surreal that children are being used as mules in a European country in the 21st Century.
There are certain adult supporters of EPL clubs who are indifferent to the use of devices that cause fire. They have forgotten the tale of a 14 year old boy killed in Bolivia because of a smoke bomb.
What about David Byrne an assistant referee after his smoke bomb incident? Byrne was hit by a flare in the posterior part of the neck during a match between the Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa.
While Byrne did not suffer any life threatening lesions, the incident reveals the extent of the problem in the EPL. What about a 15 year old victim who received damage to the lungs during a smoke bomb incident in an Aston Villa match?
The response of supporters who have good judgment is not to take their children to the matches. Ms. Taylor does the right thing in writing about children and pyrotechnic devices.
While this is a beginning, stricter measures must be taken such as permanent bans from matches and 20 years imprisonment for the perpetrators. The reasons for such punishment would be for the following:
Endangering a minor and others who attend matches
Exploitation of a minor for the purpose of obtaining pyrotechnic devices.
Destroying a sport or enjoyment of it using dangerous devices.
It is hoped that this form of child abuse in sports is addressed as soon as possible.