Change.org: Hi! My name is Caroline Pla, I’m 11 years old, and I really love football. When I was 3, I watched my big brother play Pop Warner football, and I told his coach I would play someday, too. I kept my word. I started playing when I was 5, and now I play in a Catholic Youth league — but the Philadelphia Archdiocese, which runs my league, is suddenly saying that girls aren’t allowed.
The idea that girls can’t play football is stupid. I’ve been playing for seven years, and I’ve never been injured. The guys don’t go easy on me, either — I’ve worked hard to show them that I’m just as good as they are, and I deserve to be treated the same as them.
I thought it was really unfair that they won’t let me play next year, so my mom started a petition on Change.org asking the Philadelphia Archdiocese to let girls play football. Will you click here and sign it?
When I first heard that girls aren’t allowed anymore, my first question was, “What about Gracie?” Gracie is the little sister of one of my teammates, and she really wants to play football when she gets older. For Halloween, she even dressed up like a football player and wore her hair like mine. If they enforce this rule, it won’t just hurt me — it will also hurt Gracie and all the other girls who just want to play.
When my mom first started her petition, we were really excited just to get 100 signatures. But now there are more than 55,000 signatures from all over the world, and people are REALLY starting to notice — I even got to tell my story to Ellen DeGeneres on her show! I know that if we keep the pressure on, the Philadelphia Archdiocese will see that it’s okay to let girls play football.
Caroline Pla, age 11
Marycecelia Pla (Caroline’s mom)
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