Should major league baseball care about the drinking and drug habits of its players?
What is the significance, or importance, of "image" in relation to the Great American Game?
People have been drinking and smoking for hundreds of years. Doping and juicing have been widely acknowledged in horse- and dog-racing, and among "Olympic" event contestants, as well as in professional football and basketball, and baseball, for many decades. This has all gone on with the full knowledge of administrators and owners and players, as well as by media insiders.
Over the last decade, major league baseball has instituted a public relations campaign, posing, in false indignation, as the moral arbiter of substance abuse among its contracted players. The commissioner's office, not to speak of the owners of respective teams are "shocked! shocked!!" that some major league players, even some big name stars, have been secretly taking steroids and other banned substances to enhance their performance! Even the Little Lady from Dubuque must have heard about it, by now!
Tainted records! Tarnished images!
Were the owners of teams worried about the effect these drugs might have on the health and careers of their players? You can bet they weren't!
Do you think these owners were ignorant of what was taking place in their clubhouses, of what these "personal trainers" were actually doing in there? You can bet they weren't!
The circle-jerk of hypocrisy involves virtually every part of the sport, and brings into question the moral standard of all who pretended to look the other way.
Should Americans be concerned about doping in professional sports? Does it really matter, for instance, whether or not half, or three-quarters of the players you see cavorting on the green are "high" or "low" or somewhere in between?
Perhaps we need to conduct a public burning of the effigies of drug abusers among famous sports heroes, as an exercise in ritual self-immolation. There, does that feel better? Now we can get back to that can of beer and the recliner in front of the TV.
Meanwhile, back at the courtroom, Barry Bonds is being tried for perjury in refusing to acknowledge his steroid use. No one doubts that Barry used "the Clear" or that he probably benefited from its use in his performance. It's sort of like convicting Al Capone for tax evasion. Can't convict him of illegal substance abuse, so we'll get him for lying under oath about it. Why not go after Alex Rodriguez--is it because Alex is such a nice guy?
I think the whole drug scandal scandal is a scandal manufactured for public consumption. Sic. How about we leave the sex habits of Presidents and the legal pharmaceutical usage of individuals to the privacy they deserve?