…. Redefined

Cheating is bad, true, or false?

It is an interesting question. We are taught from a very early age that cheating is bad, that it’s not the way to do things, or to get what we want. All the way through high school, and then into college, we are discouraged from cheating by pretty much everyone in our lives. Use fair means to get ahead, to achieve, to get the grades, get the girl, whatever.

As we get older, and we reach a certain awareness, however, it starts to become obvious that cheating occurs in many places, in many fields of endeavor, and by many, many successful people. And of course, we begin to wonder a little about the whole “cheating is bad” line we’ve been listening to for so long. Put another way, is it cheating for a battle commander to intercept his opponent’s communications in order to defeat him? Is it cheating for a man to lie to get a better job, in order to provide for his family; if he is able to do the job well? Is it cheating for a politician to rig an election if he truly believes that he is the man best suited to the position? Is it cheating for a man to lie to in his efforts to woo a particular woman?

These are just a couple of different dilemma’s that a person may face in their lives, but they are illustrative of the kind of questions facing professional athletes today. Is it cheating for a journeyman reliever to use PED’s to make the majors if it means he will be able to better care for his family? If you say yes, then you are saying that some notion of fair play is more important than being a good father and provider. Is that logical? Is it a position worth defending?

As a player ages, he will find that his ability to stay strong and flexible will diminish. Is it cheating for him to delay the inevitable end of his career by using PED’s? He might say that he is just doing whatever he can to get the most out of his ability. Is that cheating? Is it wrong? Seems to me that you could argue that it is admirable.

If PED’s were legal and safe, what would you say then?

And therein lies the rub. If you knew that PED’s were legal and safe, and teams administered them to individual players as needed, like they do now with painkillers muscle relaxants and surgeries and rehab and other treatments; would using them be cheating? Curt Schilling used massive amounts of painkillers to perform in Game Six of the ALCS against the Yankees in 2004. Without them, he would not have been able to perform. Was he cheating? He risked serious injury, and, in fact, suffered through more than a year of poor performances and setbacks following the ’04 playoffs; so, in effect, he cheated the team and it’s fans while he struggled to regain his pre-injury form. He risked his career to pitch that game. Why wasn’t there a huge outcry about setting a poor example for children? Is that the kind of example we want to set for our kids; that using painkillers to win a game is OK? Why is using painkillers to perform acceptable? They are just as illegal to possess and use as steroids. They are also only legally available with a prescription. Why is it OK to use them, but not steroids? Why is it OK for baseball players to use amphetamines? Why has the widespread use of speed been ignored for half a century? We all know how bad speed is, right? Or do we? Mike Lupica doesn’t, I can tell you that much.

There is selective logic being used here, and it’s disgraceful. Here’s what I know, and what doctors know.

You cannot argue, in good faith, that PED’s are seriously harmful to your health. You cannot. They are no more harmful than almost anything you can buy at your local drugstore. Just for shits and giggles, Viagra, Cialis, and Lipitrol, to name but a few, all list side effects that are as scary, and in some cases, much more terrifying than side effects you might experience if you ingest, say, Decabol. There are drugs that are being sold over the counter, right now, that state in bold-face letters that pregnant women should not even handle the contents of this package.

Steroids are prescribed for a variety of uses, and just like any serious medicine, they are administered under a doctors care and supervision. Sure, some people suffer adverse side effects when using them. Some people die if they eat peanuts. That doesn’t make peanut butter a menace to society.

By repeating over and over the claim that steroids are particularly dangerous, and even fatal to use, the MSM has made a lie true, an argument tactic that is easily defeated (provide, of course, that there is a forum to do so).

There is little real evidence to suggest that a carefully administered and monitored regimen of testosterone-boosting PED’s would be particularly risky for a healthy, adult male. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest that driving PED use underground is.

You wanna worry about the kids? Keep them informed. You don’t do them any favors by lying, or by hiding the truth.

That is the real price we pay for criminalizing behavior. We lessen our knowledge, we leave everyone with incorrect and insufficient evidence to make intelligent choices, and so people choose in the dark.

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