Anna Kimball is a 7-year-old girl in Allen, Texas. She and her younger brother Carson are incredibly close, and they participate in a number of the same after-school activities. One of those is baseball, where the Kimball siblings play for the same youth baseball team.
Or at least they did until Thursday night. According to Dallas-Fort Worth Fox affiliate KDFW, that's when the Kimballs' mother, Tami Kimball, got a call from the team's baseball coach notifying her that Anna wouldn't be allowed to play on his team this year, simply because she's a girl.
"I can't believe that's she 7 and already having to face this," Tami Kimball told KDFW. "She's already having to hear someone say, 'Because of who you are, because you were born a girl, you're not allowed to go do something.'"
Yes, that's right: Apparently gender discrimination now starts at the age of 7 in the DFW metroplex. The coach's reasoning for the decision to exclude Anna Kimball from his squad was driven by his desire to move the team into a "more competitive" league for the 2012 or 2013 season, with that future league refusing to allow girls to play with boys.
Regardless of the questionable wisdom behind pushing to get a group of 7-year-olds into a "more competitive" baseball league, the unnamed coach himself insisted in his conversation with their mother that Anna was a better player than her younger brother, even though Carson would be allowed to keep playing while Anna would not. In addition to Anna, one other girl and other boys that had played on the team are reportedly being cut to make the team more competitive.
For his part, 6-year-old Carson made it clear that he would miss playing alongside his sister, if he continued playing at all.
"I root for her on the team, and she's just a good person to play with on the baseball team," Carson Kimball told KDFW. "I just think if I can't be on the same team as my sister I should just quit on the team I was playing."
Whether or not that happens remains to be seen, but one thing seems certain: If the Kimballs are to play together again, they'll have to do it somewhere else, thanks to one coach's determination to make a very young baseball team more competitive.
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