Florida has the highest rate of drowning in the country and for those younger than 4, water is the No. 1 killer aside from birth defects. But the danger is not spread equally among all children.
Overall, black kids drown at a much higher rate than other children. But among the youngest group of kids — younger than school age — whites and Hispanics fare worse. It’s around the 4 or 5 years old when those tides turn and black kids drown at about three times the rate of other children.
Learning to swim isn’t always fun. It requires antagonizing months of adults throwing you in the water without floaties, expecting you to flap your way to the other side of the pool.
But learning how to swim is a lot more fun if Miami Heat player James Jones is in the pool too.
James Jones, along with team TV host Jason Jackson, took a dip with kids at Overtown’s Gibson Park Pool last week and discussed the importance of pool safety, all part of the Heat’s Learn To Swim campaign, now in its 12th year.
“Pools are such a potent symbol in the Florida dreamscape,” explains Florida International University anthropologist Laura Ogden.
The idea of Miami as an otherworldly dreamscape is what makes it the perfect setting for recently wrapped Mercedes-Benz Fashion Swim Week 2013. Most of the high-end hotels on South Beach give their clientele a long whiff of sex and money; it’s basically Art Basel, except instead of contemporary art, the commodity is perfect skin.