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Can "PED's" Become a Legitimate Part of Sports?

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  • Can "PED's" Become a Legitimate Part of Sports?

    This question is spawned from the latest article citing an "academic" (Professor Miller Brown) who claims that steroids, PED's or whatever you want to call the illegal substances in sports should be legalized.

    To be perfectly honest, from my perspective their arguments are legitimate. While being passionate about Anti-Doping can lead one to autmatically curl back at their perspective, I understand the logic of their claims. Not all PED use is clearly connected to the adverse effects we all assume they cause, and some of the sports that the PED's are illegal for often lead to adverse effects later in life no matter what you do or do not take while playing.

    And there is also the issue of some things being illegal (like, for example, platelet injections for soft tissue injuries being illegal in track) when they could provide clear benefits to athletes.

    But there is ALWAYS one thing that these "legalize the PED's, just make it all legal" people don't take into account, and I believe it is the number one reason that "doping" should always be illegal and banned: the little guy. Legalizing PED's does not level the playing field, they instead skew it further towards inequality.

    How, exactly, does widespread distribution of PED's get funded? How does the 18 year old prodigy suddenly qualify as "eligible" for PED use? How does the superior talent, who has no money or support, benefit from being required to take part in PED use to be given a fair chance at competing at the highest level possible?

    If we just legalized it all, who gets control of all the so called "logical" PED distribution? The shoe companies who are funding the athletes (meaning that the only way you can get the PED's you need is to prove yourself as an elite athelete.....which you can only do with PED use and causing an impossible cycle of inaccessibility)? The drug comapnies (meaning the rich only get richer, and presumably you only get PED's if you know someone or already are someone)? Governments (meaning that we can't even figure out how to properly provide REAL health care for everyone, but we are willing to provide our nations athletes with whatever they need to get Gold medals)?

    From my perspective, there is no real logical, fair way to legalize PED's. Everyone would have to be able to have access to them to prove whether or not they are good enough to be the best in the world. Every tall, skinny, black guy who wanted to try to bulk up and become a shot putter and showed even the smallest talent for it would have to be given a chance, and the drugs, and every short white kid who wanted to try to become a sprinter and showed possible ability for it would have to be given the drugs. Anyone who couldn't get it due to financial issues or stereotype problems would be getting screwed as much as the people who right now lose out on medals and money to juiced up and un-caught athletes.

    Lets be honest here, folks,we STILL don't even have reasonable distrubtion of proper training plans (uneducated coaches, ignorant training schemes, etc., for athletes who deserve more). So where and how, exactly, does properly, safely, and fairly distrubuting PED's and educating on their proper use come into play?

    Why isn't this ever discussed when these "academic" fools discuss how we clearly need to stop fighting against doping?

    Am I alone here? Am I just talking to walls or is my logic somehow terribly flawed?

  • #2
    By the way, I realize this might just get blocked as another "roids" post, but I just wanted to get this off my chest somehow. I'm so tired of hearing people talk about the issue but no one ever gets a chance to respond to their claims. There is a gaping hole in the "legalize the stuff" argument. If we should legalize it, thats fine, but you have to answer my questions first.

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    • #3
      Your opinions come reasonably close to my own. I would like
      to point to two further questions:

      1. Do we have a realistic option in the long term? I am far from
      certain.

      2. What amount of health consequences are acceptable? If we
      do legalize and some comes up with a miracle drug that adds
      five meter in the shot put, but subtracts twenty years from the life
      of the athletes, where would that put them?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Can "PED's" Become a Legitimate Part of Sports

        Originally posted by bluequiet
        And there is also the issue of some things being illegal (like, for example, platelet injections for soft tissue injuries being illegal in track) when they could provide clear benefits to athletes.
        Is that really illegal? I'm pretty sure Tegenkamp had this, or something very similar, done earlier in the year.

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        • #5
          There are two scenarios:

          A free for all on anything and everything under the sun

          or

          make a list of substances and amounts that are banned for moral and health reasons and enforce them, which is what we have now

          If you say, "we'll allow drugs, but only in 'safe' amounts" you'll always have people that exceed the agreed upon limits in order to get an edge and you're right back to where we are now.

          And if you have a free for all, I can assure you that people will die. If a dozen members of the US track team died of heart attacks in their sleep on the eve of the London Olympics, would people simply accept it as one of the hazards of the sport? Would you feel comfortable telling your son or daughter that in order to truly compete that he or she will have to shoot up? Despite all the accepted technological advantages afforded western runners such as biomechanical analysis, underwater treadmills, VO2Max testing, heart rate monitors, etc., seemingly unknown talents emerge from parts of the world with not even shoes on their feet and compete with the best in the world. That would no longer be true if there was free reign on PEDs.

          And people would die. It's happened before, and despite what these supposed experts say, it will absolutely happen again if everyone can take as much of their PEDs as they want.

          Comment


          • #6
            I've herad conflicting reports, KIR. I remember when it was reported that one of the Steelers got PRP injections in his knee there was some discussion in the track world that such a procedure is not legal under the current guise of the law.

            As for your points, Imaginative:

            1. I'm not real sure what the realistic options are for the long term. If legalizing it all is what is realisitic in our future, I feel like we are basically taking steps backwards in sports and making track and field as well as a great deal of other sports (American football, baseball, etc.) endeavors only for the rich and well connected. That is also not in line with what the "true spirit of sport" is supposed to be about, just as that professor talked about.

            2. I'm an athlete and right now, in my obsession, I would gladly give up on mobility and pain free joints later to fufill my potential as an athlete now. But I have never taken anything other than creatine during my athletic endeavors. I dont' think we can govern other peoples right to choose in this area, which is why I believe there is some legitimacy to the legalization of PED's.

            However, to me the legalization of PED's will just block out so many people who won't be able to get access to the drugs when they are just as qualified as anyone to get them. Which ends up leaving us exactly where we are now.

            Comment


            • #7
              We need to keep trying to draw the line, no matter how difficult that is sometimes.
              The alternative is that some "little league parents" will be pumping up their kids, with whatever works, or seems to work, and every stage in between will be based on that reality.
              That is not acceptable to me, but it is just a few steps down the slippery slope, once you decide that pills and injections can replace training and dedication...

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              • #8
                Nobody, even the cheaters, would agree with your assertion that pills and injections ever get even remotely close to replacing training and dedication.

                To me, its the excessively warped ideologies of training and dedication that prompt PED use.

                Having said that, I agree with you. I think that we need to keep drawing the line. I think we even need to admit to contradictions and grey areas within the anti-doping philosophy. However, it's like democracy; it's flawed, but its the best we've got.

                Releasing the PED machine as an allowed presence in no way fixes anything, and in my opinion no matter what you believe, it actually pulls sports backwards. I can't see how there is any logic to counter that fact.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I did not have time to read all these posts because some are lengthy but a good discussion subject matter. I just thought I would add a couple of thoughts as I glanced through some of these.

                  I have heard of those who support PED's because they suggest that they are safe. I don't know but can believe some or most of these PED's might be safe if taken correctly under a doctor's supervision. I have heard some in the medical profession voice such opinions and who am I to disagree with them.

                  However, if they were legalized, how many people would be getting their hands on this stuff who would not be taking them under a doctor's care. Probably large amounts of people who could not afford the medical care required to make them safe and thus we would not have a level playing field. It could be even worse than it is now, AND, more dangerous to those who take the stuff incorrectly.

                  How many naive youth would see improvements with a certain dose, then decide to double or triple the amounts not realizing the risks. I caused myself health problems by taking too much of a non drug food supplement. I could only imaging how bad someone could be effected by real drugs.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bluequiet
                    I've herad conflicting reports, KIR. I remember when it was reported that one of the Steelers got PRP injections in his knee there was some discussion in the track world that such a procedure is not legal under the current guise of the law.
                    A reliable source (David Monti) on Tegenkamp indeed getting the platelet-rich plasma procedure.
                    http://runningtimes.com/Print.aspx?articleID=15505

                    I'm probably not the only one surprised Tegenkamp is walking the fine line of legality, considering the company he now keeps.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by bluequiet
                      2. I'm an athlete and right now, in my obsession, I would gladly give up on mobility and pain free joints later to fufill my potential as an athlete now.
                      We know that there are other athletes who would gladly die a premature death to fulfill their potential (or at least their drug-aided potential). Where does one draw the line?

                      I still think it is perfectly legitimate for sports authorities to want to encourage young people to participate in their sports without having to disclose that in order to succeed at the highest level, they must take PED's that are likely to have serious adverse effects on their health.

                      A clean level playing field should be everyone's goal.

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                      • #12
                        We can close all the doors we like, but--culturally speaking--the drugs horses have all left the barn. All this is strictly a rear-guard action, mostly symbolic, with limited (if however "good") results. I'm totally happy when a Ramzi, say, is pitched out. But we've gone through eras when PEDs were totally legal, to illegal but largely untestable, to illegal but often untestable. The larger issue is our overwhelming cultural preference FOR drugs of all kinds with perceived "good" benefits. If we can avoid depression, think clearer, enjoy lower blood pressure, whatever, WHY NOT use the drugs that do these good things? I'm a complete believer in honesty and "fairness" in sport, but, at the end of the day, an abstract sense of fairness is simply that: abstract.

                        But, hey, if it makes us feel better to put padlocks on the barn doors, we should keep doing it...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kuha
                          We can close all the doors we like, but--culturally speaking--the drugs horses have all left the barn. All this is strictly a rear-guard action, mostly symbolic, with limited (if however "good") results. I'm totally happy when a Ramzi, say, is pitched out. But we've gone through eras when PEDs were totally legal, to illegal but largely untestable, to illegal but often untestable. The larger issue is our overwhelming cultural preference FOR drugs of all kinds with perceived "good" benefits. If we can avoid depression, think clearer, enjoy lower blood pressure, whatever, WHY NOT use the drugs that do these good things? I'm a complete believer in honesty and "fairness" in sport, but, at the end of the day, an abstract sense of fairness is simply that: abstract.

                          But, hey, if it makes us feel better to put padlocks on the barn doors, we should keep doing it...
                          Brillant post sir!
                          phsstt!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kuha
                            We can close all the doors we like, but--culturally speaking--the drugs horses have all left the barn. All this is strictly a rear-guard action, mostly symbolic, with limited (if however "good") results. I'm totally happy when a Ramzi, say, is pitched out. But we've gone through eras when PEDs were totally legal, to illegal but largely untestable, to illegal but often untestable. The larger issue is our overwhelming cultural preference FOR drugs of all kinds with perceived "good" benefits. If we can avoid depression, think clearer, enjoy lower blood pressure, whatever, WHY NOT use the drugs that do these good things? I'm a complete believer in honesty and "fairness" in sport, but, at the end of the day, an abstract sense of fairness is simply that: abstract.

                            But, hey, if it makes us feel better to put padlocks on the barn doors, we should keep doing it...
                            I find your post to be an apples to oranges comparison. Someone who takes an anti-depressant to treat depression isn't trying to push the envelope to find an edge.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Ned Ryerson
                              Originally posted by kuha
                              We can close all the doors we like, but--culturally speaking--the drugs horses have all left the barn. All this is strictly a rear-guard action, mostly symbolic, with limited (if however "good") results. I'm totally happy when a Ramzi, say, is pitched out. But we've gone through eras when PEDs were totally legal, to illegal but largely untestable, to illegal but often untestable. The larger issue is our overwhelming cultural preference FOR drugs of all kinds with perceived "good" benefits. If we can avoid depression, think clearer, enjoy lower blood pressure, whatever, WHY NOT use the drugs that do these good things? I'm a complete believer in honesty and "fairness" in sport, but, at the end of the day, an abstract sense of fairness is simply that: abstract.

                              But, hey, if it makes us feel better to put padlocks on the barn doors, we should keep doing it...
                              I find your post to be an apples to oranges comparison. Someone who takes an anti-depressant to treat depression isn't trying to push the envelope to find an edge.
                              To some small degree it is, but I'm emphasizing a broader cultural phenomenon: the enthusiastic acceptance of drugs to "improve" certain perceived weaknesses/deficiencies. That's the point, whether the goal is to improve up to "average", or to improve much further up to "elite." Taken as a whole, drug use in our culture can only be described as pervasive. And that's because nearly all of it is perceived--from whatever perspective--to produce GOOD and beneficial results. The problem, clearly, lies in trying to distinguish between "good" enhancement and "bad" enhancement. And that's much easier to do rhetorically than in real life.

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