The Pink Elephant in the Locker Room

As sure as the initial poke from the tip of the syringe, the truth about doping and sports stings. We have watched as heroes that once stood as tall as mountains are reduced to repentant mounds of rubble of their former selves. And turned on our TVs to see government agencies breach their realm of jurisdiction in witch-hunts that cross the globe in pursuit of finding those they believe to be guilt of violating the sacredness of sports. The truth about performance enhancing drugs is that they are here to stay. Needle for needle, pill for pill, indictment for indictment this issue is putting up Hall of Fame numbers.

By C.J. Gardner

Steroids and performance-enhancing drugs in sports have become a problem that is starting to pop up in all sports across the sports world. From the Olympic sports to the big four sports in the United States, steroids use is becoming a bigger problem with each passing year. Even with sports leagues testing for a list of various performance-enhancing drugs, athletes are risking getting caught so they can get an unfair advantage over the other athletes in their sports.

These athletes that are using performance-enhancing drugs are ruining professional sports. They are gaining an unfair advantage over other athletes who are clean and are choosing not partake in this drug that has lasting, negative effects to your body. They main reason PED’s are ruining sports is they way they are affecting the athletes who use them. Athletes are having health problems and dying well before they should have because of their PED usage. They have been too prevalent in sports and now the professional leagues are trying their best to get them out of sports all together by testing and punishing those athletes who test positive.

The history of performance-enhancing drugs being used in sports goes all the way back to the 1800s. According to a story done by Sports Illustrated Arthur Linton died during a race and even though the cause of death was reported as typhoid fever, he was believed to have taken trimethyl, which is a stimulant. In 1935, Adolf Butenandt led a group of German scientists to develop anabolic steroids as a way to treat hypogonadism, which is a testosterone deficiency. These steroids were initially started to help people with some health problems, but as with other tools developed, people found out the other things they can be used for. People cheating and trying to gain a bigger advantage is something that has been going on for as long as people have been competing. When some people found out that steroids enhanced your performance, they starting using them to get an advantage over others.

One incident that shows PED’s are ruining sports was when Melky Cabrera was suspended 50 games earlier this year. At the time of his suspension on August 15th, he had a .346 batting average. At the end of the season that his average was the highest batting average in the league. This brought up the dilemma of whether a player who had tested positive for PED’s should be allowed to win any sort of accolade for his season performance. MLB and Cabrera did the right thing though and set a the precedent that players who test positive for PED’s will not be eligible for any awards or accolades for his season’s performance. This rule should also be used for career records. If you admitted to using PED’s during your playing years and you set a record, it should not count. Athletes are putting up numbers and breaking long-standing records because they are benefiting more from using these drugs to increase their productivity. This is ruining the integrity of sports and tarnishing some of the records that are being broken.

One thing that has come out of the professional leagues trying to get PED’s out of their sports has been a witch-hunt for PED users. Because of all the people using PED’s across all sports, there is now a witch-hunt where anyone is now allowed to allege an athlete of using performance-enhancing drugs. If anyone has a down year or big year people talk about them going off of PED’s or are starting to use that. Player’s reputations are being tarnished just because people are being overly skeptical and accusing athletes of using PED’s even though there is not proof of them ever doing so. An example of this was earlier this year. With Derek Jeter having a good season after a couple of down years by his standards, Skip Bayless came out and said that he thinks that Jeter was using PED’s. With no proof whatsoever, Bayless made this comment just because that is the way people think now. Fans and pundits now just think that more athletes than not are using some sort of PED’s and that is ruining the way we view athletes and their accomplishments.

Baseball and Olympic sports have been the sports most caught up in the PED talk, but any PED is ruining all sports. It affects the way fans view the sports they watch and they are losing respect for the integrity of those sports because they see athletes that have no respect for themselves or their sport and take PED to improve their performance. When fans see these athletes become juiced up beings, they start to lose respect for those athletes competing across the boards. Fans like to see everyone getting an equal chance to succeed, instead of some gaining an advantage by cheating,