The kids know of this as a fun game, not a deadly activity
CHICAGO & TORONTO (PRWEB) March 10, 2008
The corrected release reads:
GASP ORGANIZATION LAUNCHES TO END THE DEADLY CHOKING GAME
Today marks the official launch of GASP (Games Adolescents Shouldn't Play), a nonprofit organization that fights the deadly Choking Game with the most powerful weapon at our disposal: education. Set up by families of Choking Game victims and joined by educators, law enforcement and medical experts, GASP is determined to prevent the over 100 annual deaths and incalculable suffering caused by this "game" by publicizing the tremendous dangers in schools and homes across North America.
GASP launched a new web site today - http://www.gaspinfo.com - offering preventive information including warning signs and educational kits for download and mail order with videos, presentations and brochures to arm schools, churches and other community groups in eliminating this deadly practice among their children. Everyone is encouraged to watch the shocking and at times graphic flash presentation created by GASP to grab the attention of young people and force an understanding that the Choking Game is no game at all - http://www.gaspinfo.com/flash_vid.html. The video tailors its style to teens but has hard-hitting information about the potential effects of this practice - seizure, permanent brain damage and death - as well as a recording of a real 911 call from Samuel Mordecai who found his 13-year old twin brother Gabriel dead in his bedroom after playing the Choking Game alone.
"The information provided by GASP has the power to save young lives. Today's youth are bombarded by challenges to seek new thrills and extreme experiences. The Choking Game may have deadly consequences if the child is using ligatures about the neck and, more importantly, playing alone," said Thomas Andrew, M.D., Chief Medical Examiner, State of New Hampshire. "Fatal suspension can occur at levels far less than standing height, including from bedposts and even doorknobs. The time window in which this kind of catastrophe can occur can be amazingly narrow."
"The cases that we've identified in Canada, and what seems to be coming out in many of the news reports, is that the children that die are ones who do it as a solitary behavior," says Dr. Andrew MacNab, a professor of pediatrics at the University of British Columbia and one of the doctors studying this phenomenon in Canada. MacNab conducted a survey in schools in Ontario and Texas which found that 68 percent of children around age 12 had heard about the Choking Game.
Called by many other names like Pass-out Game, Blackout, Flatliner, Space Cowboy, and Airplaning, this practice is attractive to a wide-range of youths, especially high-achieving kids that know to avoid drugs and alcohol and think this is a safe alternative. "This can be a habit-forming and often deadly practice that our youths are either practicing or know someone who is practicing. We must get the word out to kids who just don't know the level of danger they are putting themselves in. To make an impact, we need the efforts and donations of concerned citizens across North America and I encourage you to visit the GASP web site to get started," said GASP Executive Director Aaron Nack.
The GASP volunteer board, led by Nack, has hired Scott Metheny, a police officer in Pennsylvania and expert speaker on the Choking Game, to present to parents, community groups and professionals throughout the U.S. and Canada. Metheny will also train others to be GASP speakers. Metheny learned of the Choking Game while teaching a DARE class in September of 2005 and has since presented over 200 times including last year at the International DARE Conference and the National Association of School Resource Officers Conference. He has appeared on numerous television shows including TODAY, Good Morning America, It's Your Call With Lynn Doyle, CNN, and Fox News.
"The kids know of this as a fun game, not a deadly activity," says Metheny. "When they see their friend twitching on the floor, they think it's funny and they think it's safe. They don't realize that their friend is having a seizure and the feeling they get is their brain cells dying off. They also don't realize that playing this game alone is more dangerous than Russian roulette. We have to tell them that this game is not worth dying for."
To help GASP create and distribute educational materials to end the Choking Game, and to receive an educational kit in return, please make donations at http://www.gaspinfo.com/donations.html.
The Choking Game is a misunderstood activity causing death and disability in today's youth. It often begins with teens choking each other as a way to get high without the risk of getting caught with drugs or alcohol. It ends with kids dying or suffering permanent brain damage each year. GASP is a global nonprofit campaign that fights this "game" with the most powerful weapon at our disposal: education. Most people have no idea how dangerous the Choking Game is until it hits close to home--but we can prevent suffering by publicizing the danger in our schools and homes. Together, we can stamp out this deadly game in your community. To find out more, download or order materials and videos, and to make a donation, visit our web site at http://www.gaspinfo.com.