By Andres Reyes
The juice is there. The syringe is there. And you love the way you look and feel. Money, women and fame. And more money. That is what is at stake when deciding whether or not to take steroids. For some young athletes who seek to stand out, taking these drugs may be the only option. I am angry because we, as a society, have let it get to this point. Steroids are killing the sports world. Yes, athletes will reach a physical peak while on these drugs, but the mental and moral risks are far too great.
Are there benefits? Absolutely. Athletes suffer injuries all the time, and it is possible that human growth hormones can shorten recovery time, preventing superstars from missing playing time.
Fans come to see a show, so it might as well be the best it can be. Spectators pay money to see athletes perform at a high level.
“Not only would the playing field suddenly be even for all players, it would be at a higher level,” Forbes staff writer Chris Smith said. “A huge part of watching sports is witnessing the very peak of human athletic ability, and legalizing performance-enhancing drugs would help athletes climb even higher.”
Not so fast. Yes, athletes would perform better, but both pitcher and hitter would be on the juice. Superhuman vs. supehuman. It would be the same situation we have been watching before, assuming the product beforeincluded only players not on drugs.
And this new system would not be fair to the records cyclists and sprinters held before. There is no way to compare the accomplishments of someone who was on performance enhancers to someone who was not.
Forget that performance-enhancers cause “mood swings, fatigue, restlessness, loss of appetite, insomnia, reduced sex drive and steroid cravings,” according to an article from drugabuse.gov. The real reason not to dope is not just for the sake of sports, but morality.
A high school kid might be looking at a star baseball player who has used steroids and think it is an easy way out. Taking these drugs is telling the whole world you do not have to work hard, but instead can just pop a pill or inject yourself with juice to achieve bigger and better things.
Athletes should strive to be better than this. Afterall, longterm steroid use can cause infertility, heart attacks and severe aggression. I do not know how some athletes can live with themselves after being handed an award or making a team while on steroids, knowing their competitors might have been clean.
But this is what we have become. Now there is a drug for everything. Have a headache? Take a Tylenol. Can’t concentrate in class? Take an Adderall. Want to cheat in sports? Take steroids. Athletes are incredibly influential. Those taking enhancers further promote the idea that humans need supplements for every little thing. I won’t lie, I wear Steve Nash sneakers and try to fashion my beard like Tyson Chandler, both basketball players, but there has to be a line.
The real message athletes send to young fans is that hard work and being independent is not important. Cheating is the only way to win. What is frightening is that this can be applied to anything, not just sports.
Taking steroids while competing in sports is cheating. Many athletes are on drugs, but some others actually work hard. The fact the hard workers feel they can’t compete with the athletes on steroids and subsequently start using is atrocious.
When all the heavy users stop, the ones who feel they need to use to compete will stop, which will cause the athletes who are curious to stop considering steroids.
More importantly, this cannot be the player’s choice. Major sports organizations must commit to testing for these drugs more often and improving the way they do it.
A fan should never feel disbelief or disappointment for the sport they love. When stories arise of sports stars doping, records, performances and championships all come into question.
Set a good example, athletes of the world, and stop living a lie. Be who you are and depend only on hard work and passion.