This is a very hard topic. I think the medical/scientific community needs to do as many studies as possible to determine just how much damage can be done to the brains of young people when they play football. I also wonder about the effects of heading the ball countless times in soccer.
On the anti-football side: Football seems to be a major cause of brain damage (pending further study). This brain damage occurs not only on “big” hits but also on the more common hits that happen time and time again in the course of a practice. These traumas are especially (it appears) damaging for younger brains.
On the pro-football side: Everything has risks. You can get concussions doing all sorts of things. We have to balance the risks of concussion and brain damage with the benefits of playing football. These can be both health benefits (more muscle, better cardio) and psychological/social. We can’t just say “oh, you might get hurt” without recognizing that there will be some costs to kids who can’t play football.