Re: 2005 Cincinnati Reds Draft Selections
Huge props to RedlegJake for his post.
LD is tricky business, the various iterations of ADD in particular. It's simultaneously overdiagnosed and mishandled. There's a lot of kids who've got a touch of something like it. I probably would be slapped with the ADD tag if I went through school today. I was a hyper kid and my doctors urged my mother to stick me on Ritalin, mostly because they found active, talkative kids an annoyance 30+ years ago. Really all I needed was to lay off the Apple Jacks and get plenty of running around time. It didn't really affect me in terms of schooling, I did pretty well.
There's a lot of kids in that boat. Is Johnny a little hyper? Sure, but in a lot of cases it's not preventing him from learning things.
Then there's kids for whom it's a real problem. The sad fact is that far too many schools consider it something that ought to be handled with medication and do a lousy job of supporting the kids who most need the help. Those kids are often viewed as an annoyance by the school system and their parents are treated like dangerous reactionaries when they point out that the system is failing their kids. The attitude of many teachers and school officials (even special ed coordinators) is something like, "Well, some pills and a homework sheet worked for Sally Smith. It'd work for your child too if you were a better parent."
I know this stuff because I've got a sister who has some serious ADHD issues and my parents had to fight a war the entire time she was in school just to get the school system to enact the things that it put in her individual education plan. And this was in what a lot of people consider a pretty good school district (though it's eerily straight out of "Pump Up the Volume")
On the character issue, I wouldn't ever assume a kid with LD issues lacked character because he/she had struggled in school. You never know how severe the LD issues are or how well the school is equipped to handle them (and it's easy to get lost at a megasized state university). That said, let's not be naive. Not everyone with LD issues has sterling character. I brought up my cousin in the draft thread. He's a gifted basketball player, might have the best three-point shot of anyone in eastern Pennsylvania this year. Pitt wanted him bad and was willing to redshirt him his freshman year and give him nearly unlimited tutoring and support. Then the assistant coach got to know him better. The kid's got severe learning disabilities which shouldn't be minimized (he may even be illiterate - for instance, he refuses to get a driver's license and the working suspicion is that's because he knows he can't pass the written test), but he also doesn't give a rip about overcoming them. He's scared off pretty much every basketball program in the mid-Atlantic and he may or may not graduate next week and he really doesn't care. If ever there was a kid who needed to join the military, it's him.
So I think it's fair to say that we really don't know what Lecure's academic problems mean. I don't think they should be held against him and I don't think they should be ignored. Hopefully it turns into a non-issue as time passes.
Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong
I'm witchcrafting everybody.