• 45°

Street is no place for a game of basketball

The police department should not have to remind parents to keep children and their basketball goals out of streets, but sadly a warning was needed.

According to Chief Kenneth Collins, Brookhaven has a street hoops problem. He’s been talking to parents about the dangerous practice, especially after one child was nearly hit by a car a few weeks ago while playing.

“You’ve got some of them who don’t want to take them out of the road,” he said about the portable basketball goals. “I wish the parents would understand about these basketball goals being in the street. It’s just a matter of time, not if one of the kids is going to get hurt, it’s when one of the kids get hurt.”

We understand that parents cannot possibly have eyes on their children at all times, but they can set rules about playing in the street so the police chief doesn’t have to.

Officers have enough to worry about without dealing with unnecessary calls about basketball games going on in the streets.

“I’ve got a few parents fighting me every step of the way, talking trash,” he said. “Some parents don’t see the wisdom in not having their child play in the street, or keeping their child out of the road on these ATVs. All it takes is one time. All it takes is for somebody to look away for a few seconds, or to be on their cell phone texting, to kill somebody. And they don’t understand. It’s not a black or a white issue. It’s a safety issue.”

Collins is right, and we encourage parents to help him fight this problem.