On Passivity

By Chris Willertz

One of the biggest hurdles in trying to build a wrestling program at Winton Woods has been trying to take spectators and turn them into wrestlers.

More and more young men are devoted to entertainment and being entertained. Watching sports, watching movies, playing video games, texting friends, listening to music, “shooting around”, being a spectator as life passes them by (which they don’t have a clue really is happening) is the norm.

The boys at Winton Woods, all boys nation wide, are all participating in this new phenomenon. And I would say us adults, especially adult men are to blame. We have turned into spectators. We have become fat and lazy, complaining that our wealth is not enough although we have more, much more than our parents, who had much more than their parents.

We want more, worse yet, we EXPECT more. Even worse, we have forgotten the JOY of working hard, of suffering for a cause greater than ourselves.

For example:

  • When is the last time you have worked so hard you were sore the next day? (and loved that feeling!)
  • The last time you sacrificed for a loved one so much that it hurt? (especially financially)
  • Wrestled with a moral decision, to do the right thing? (What a great feeling to take a stand!)
  • Ticked somebody off because you stated your beliefs and weren’t afraid to offend? (What a great feeling it is to take a stand!)
  • The last time you spent time with your family because you wanted to lead them and help them? (Why are you a dad anyways?)

We are missing out on true manhood, dying to ourselves and discovering the great joy this provides.

We are the reason why more kids don’t wrestle. We are the reason why wrestling programs are being eliminated around the country. We are the reason why authentic manhood is becoming a thing of the past.

We know how to be an active, suffering man looking to do great things for our society, we just aren’t doing it. If the problem is too big we complain, if we complain at all. I know absentee dads are a huge problem, but this is nothing new. What is worse are the boys who have dads at home but are not “present” for their boys. They aren’t celebrating their boys, teaching their boys, forcing their boys to “MAN-UP”. They exist and that’s it. And we AREN’T PICKING UP THE SLACK! We have to fill in the gap, for our sakes, our daughter’s sakes, society’s sake.

I am going to step up my efforts to change the spectator boy into the wrestling boy. I hope you do the same.

Love and admiration,
Coach Willertz