With all the PED cases in professional sports, should we allow it, or continue cracking down?
By Nate Sanchez and Josh Bennett
Sports Editor and Assistant Sports Editor
NS: Let’s talk steroids in baseball. I’m for them. What do you say?
JB: I’m against them. Most athletes naturally get better on their own and juicing is a shortcut that costs the user later on. When you have a player who is in the gym and is practicing throughout the offseason, it’s not fair for someone else to stick a needle in their butt and gain unnatural muscles. Plus these drugs have awful side effects, such as increased anger, bone damage, and a decrease in penis size and performance, and nobody wants that.
NS: There’s no escaping the competitive aspect of sports, even outside the lines. If there are 25 spots on a Major League Baseball roster with 30 teams, that’s only 750 MLB jobs for an entire international player population. Any possible edge you can get should be welcomed. Level the playing field. Plus, penis size is a matter of preference. It’s a sacrifice the player would be willing to make.
JB: I understand that, but the drug tests are so complex and in depth nowadays, its nearly impossible for anyone to get away with using these drugs. Then you get people like Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez who will have asterisks next to their stats because they were caught, and fans will question the clean, legit players.
Look at the Seahawks, who won the Super Bowl this year. Since 2010, the Seahawks have been caught nine times, including twice this season. So why shouldn’t a fan question the legitimacy of their Super Bowl win, if they have been caught so many times.
NS: That’s the thing. For every guy who gets caught, there are 10 that get away with it. There’s no way you can test everybody and there isn’t enough time between games/series to do it if you had the resources. If steroids are allowed, everyone can take them and even the playing field.
JB: But you shouldn’t take them. They aren’t natural and can harm the body. If all pro athletes are taking steroids, kids will start taking them, and that is not a good idea.
NS: I’m not saying that all athletes should be required to take them. I’m just saying there shouldn’t be a penalty for trying to be better at your job, which is always at risk. The shelf-life for athletes is short as it is. If the way I’m providing for my family is at risk of being taken from me, I’m going to keep it by any means necessary. The argument that I’m really tired of hearing is the idea that players should be villainized because of their PED use.
JB: They shouldn’t be villainized, but they should be held responsible for blatantly cheating and trying to get ahead of others. If you naturally cannot be at a high level, accept it rather than destroying your body to be good for a few years. If they really cared about their families, they wouldn’t destroy their bodies and die in their forties and fifties, instead of playing naturally and living a lot longer.
NS: If they’re not banned anymore, it wouldn’t be cheating to take PEDs. And look at Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire. They’re all alive and kicking in their forties and (allegedly) took steroids.
JB: Right, but if it was not banned anymore, it would be a requirement to fill yourself with PEDs in order to play pro ball, and that is something that is not morally right or healthy. These players are still humans, they aren’t supernatural beings or machines.
NS: There’s the moral argument. Ty Cobb was a racist who slid with his spikes up, Shoeless Joe Jackson took money to tank in the World Series, and Pete Rose was a gambler. These men are considered some of the greatest to play the game. There’s no reason someone should be burned at the stake for trying to be better at his job.
JB: You are right, there are better ways to play the game. Cheating, however, is not one of them.