A Reality We Need To Embrace Doping in sports (Performance Enhancing Drugs) has become an issue in all sports of all levels. In the last decade the amount of players who have been caught using performance enhancing drugs has tremendously increased. Doping is considered an artificial aid. An artificial aid allows an athlete to compete at a higher level. However, these aids have technically been in use in sports since the Greeks first put on shoes in the Olympics. Doping is another artificial aid and therefore should be legal to any player in his/her sport.
Critics of doping claim that players should be competing with their “god given abilities. ” However, players quit competing with their “god given abilities” as soon as the Greeks put a shoe on to run. Perhaps a batter in baseball takes HGH (Human Growth Hormone) to boost his ability to work out and get stronger, while another batter may be taking legal creatine and protein boosts to heighten their performance. While both measures accomplish what the players wants are HGH is a faster and more efficient way to produce the same results.
In the last decade alone, due to scientific advancement, doping has become one of the most popular ways athletes like to increase their abilities. Barry Bonds, professional baseball player, is being criticized by those who do not think he should be in the hall of fame for using steroids. However, Hank Aaron used Deer Antler Spray, a more natural substance that produces near the same results in testosterone levels. The two home run kings of baseball are compared on a wide scale level just because Hank Aaron did not use a “steroid. ”
Critics not for the use of anabolic steroids and other testosterone boosting drugs are only against these drugs because of the simple fact of that they have some negative side effects. The result can be death if one overdoses, but is this not true of all drugs? Norman Fost (Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Wisconsin) says “If you ask the so-called experts to produce a list of elite athletes who died of any of those problems, they have trouble. ” So why is it that steroids are “singled out” when there are multiple other forms of “PED’s” that are legal and produce near the same results.
Athletes pay top dollar to doctors to get them in the best shape their body can be in. It is these doctors who are advising the athletes to take a planned amount of a substance that may be illegal, for a short period of time. They are doing this because many banned substances are not harmful if taken correctly and not abused. Fifty years ago when it the world was not aware of the substances athletes took there was no controversy. However athletes like Hank Aaron (former home-run record holder) and Jim Brown (one of the greatest NFL running backs of all time) both used Deer Antler Spray, which increases testosterone production.
Athletes of the early 20th century even used drugs like Benzedrine (Speed) and even Anabolic Steroids even then, also. Professor Fost compares the constant investigations to a “witch hunt” and goes on to say “like the Salem witch trials, the campaign against PEDs is a mixture of hysteria, hypocrisy, and misinformation. ” The facts critics claim of the illness that doping can cause are actually misunderstandings. They claim “prolonged use” of anabolic steroids can result cardiovascular health risks like a heart failure, heart attack, and strokes.
They also say it can cause cancer and “sexual” abnormalities like producing estrogen for males/testosterone for females. Some are ridiculous enough to even bring up the danger of the needle not being clean. According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), the number of deaths due to anabolic androgenic steroids are at three per year. Even in their critique of doping they answer the question of why it should be legal and why the health argument is not valid. For athletes who use anabolic steroids, they take injections prescribed by a doctor usually once every couple years.
Any other use of steroids may be to repair an injury (which does not produce any excess testosterone). Rather than just negative side effects, steroids are more commonly (and less knowingly) used for good. For athletes who suffer injuries in their career, and most all do, steroids could quickly and effectively get them back on their feet, However, athletes cannot resort to a steroid because of steroids being banned in most every sport. Alex Rodriguez, 3rd basemen for the New York Yankees, has undergone controversy about his use of anabolic steroids recently found in a random MLB (Major League Baseball) drug check of the team.
Rodriguez had been out of the lineup though recovering from an ACL tear, hence his use of the steroid. Other professional baseball players are resorting to hiding their use of drugs with Probenecid whether they are using them to boost their performance or fix an injury. It is estimated that 95 percent of all NFL (National Football League) athletes have used a form of steroid during their life with the intention of boosting their performance. In the 2012-2013 season the National Football League contained 32 teams, each of those teams having 53 players.
Of the 53 players on each team this shows that 50 players had taken an anabolic steroid in their career. In a survey conducted by USNews, 1 in 10 ex NFL athletes had admitted to using a now banned anabolic steroid during their career. In cycling Ronald Bailey writes, “For as long as the Tour has existed, since 1903, its participants have been doping themselves. No dope, no hope. The Tour, in fact, is only possible because – not despite the fact – there is doping. For 60 years this was allowed. For the past 30 years it has been officially prohibited.
Yet the fact remains; great cyclists have been doping themselves, then as now. ” This only reiterates the critics’ false claims that PEDs are ruining the genuine records set by athletes of previous generations. Doping has been an option for an athlete to better themselves since the early 1900’s. The only unfair advantage is that the superstar athletes of the modern era are taking the blame instead of the athletes of previous history, and maybe it is not doping that’s ruining sports, but rather the accusations of these athletes’ that is ruining it instead.
The skepticism that surrounds all sports will always be there if doping remains illegal; the only solution to end this uncertainty is to legalize it. Works Cited http://espn. go. com/special/s/drugsandsports/steroids. html http://dwb. unl. edu/teacher/nsf/c10/c10links/www. tcada. state. tx. us/research/facts/steroids. html http://www. cdc. gov/mmwr/PDF/wk/mm5432. pdf http://www. nlm. nih. gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682395. html http://reason. com/blog/2013/01/18/no-dope-no-hope-why-should-spectators-ca http://health. usnews. com/health-news/family-health/pain/articles/2009/02/20/1-in-10-ex-nfl-players–used–steroids-poll-reports