The Case For Steroids

May 22, 2010   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

It seems that nary a week goes by without another player being indicted on charges of using PEDs. While the juicers’, and their suppliers, house of cards fell in the MLB, PED investigations and suspensions have now proliferated to the NFL, professional cycling, and other sports.

One thing is clear. These substances, the people who use them, and the people who distribute them, are not going away.

Every conviction is only a drop in the vast ocean that the purists believe professional sports are sinking in.

There may be only one solution: Legalize performance enhancing drugs.

It may not be a perfect fix, but it would end the tiresome finger pointing, rumor generating, asterisk affixing, 1940’s style blacklisting that has been running rampant in professional sports today.

The argument for the legalization and regulation of these performance enhancing drugs is similar to the argument for the legalization of controlled substances such a marijuana.

There is no stopping it completely. Sure, the War On (Performance Enhancing) Drugs has garnered a few victories, but those are few and far between compared to the holes in the system that allow these PEDs to enter the bloodstreams of our prized athletes.

Athletes in general are adored by their fans, and are idolized by young children. The truth, however, is that just because they are rich and talented, does not mean that they are inherently “good” people. In fact, it is often because of their fame and fortunes that many athletes become drug and alcohol users, female and spousal abusers, adulterers, conceited, selfish, jaded, narcissistic, or all of the above. Take your pick.

Reading the newspapers or watching ESPN, it seems that there are very few athletes who can even qualify as decent, much less heroic, figures. Maybe the athletes are changing, or maybe, like how the brightest of lights brings out flaws in even the smoothest skin, the media evolution allows us just too close of a look for us to retain the puppy-saving ideal citizen image we have of our favorite sports figures.

Regulating performance enhancing drugs would even the playing field. Teams already have their own nutritionists, weight trainers, medical staff, and high tech facilities that allow their players to achieve physical results far beyond the normal Joe six-pack is capable of. Performance Enhancing Drugs merely widen the gap between the mortal and the superhuman.

In the MLB’s Mitchell Report, over 87 players were specifically named as relating to steroid and steroid based offenses. On this list were superstars like Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, and Rafael Palmeiro. Also on this list were no-names like Todd Pratt and Hal Morris. This is evidence that steroids alone cannot turn an average player into a star.

More recently, NFL players have been getting caught up in the PED storm.

Brian Cushing, the Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2009, was recently suspended four games for his involvement with PEDs. However, upon a re-vote, Cushing was still awarded Rookie of the Year honors. This is a sign that not only are PEDs widespread in the NFL, but people know it and are even beginning to accept it.

In the opinion of one NFL player, PED use is as low as 15 percent amongst players. In another current players estimate, it is as high as 30 percent. If this is the case, and who would know better than guys who work out with, spend time in the locker room with, and more importantly, are, NFL players, then why have only a few players been charged?

Major league sports organizations know that they are selling a spectacle. They can’t make the players donate to charity, give autographs, or even acknowledge a fan’s presence. What they can do is provide an awe-inspiring show of athletic ability, strength, and power of the human form.

While it may be cynical and jaded outlook on sports, sooner or later this performance enhancing drug situation is going to have to be hit head-on. Were PEDs to be regulated, at the very least fans wouldn’t have to wonder if they’re favorite players were secretly juicing. They would know that they were, and they would know that they were only doing it so that they could compete in a league where everybody else is doing it.

Then, more focus could be spent on keeping PEDs out of player’s bodies at the collegiate and high school levels, where the love of the game and the purity of the sport outweighs the love of money and marvel.

It will also make the players who voluntarily refuse to take PEDs look like heroes, as opposed to singling out a few villains in a league where every player could be harboring the same dark secret.

Just my two cents, hate away. I know you want to.  


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readers comments
  1. arturo on July 30th, 2014 6:05 am



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