In the world of sports today, issues have emerged concerning the use of energy enhancing drugs among the famous sports personalities. A performance-enhancing drug is a substance taken by the athletes to boost their performance. Among the pertinent issues is the doping which is the use of performance enhancing drugs to achieve extraordinary results in the field of athletics. The doping issue resulted in the formation of anti-doping agencies. The amateur athletes usually refer to it as an anabolic steroid. There is need to remove anti-doping legislations to allow performance enhancers. The anti-doping agencies should focus more on the individual’s health and fitness instead of focusing on what they use to become victorious. This article aims at persuading the responsible agencies to allow the use of performance enhancing drugs.
The History of Performance Enhancing drugs (PEDs).
The history of performance enhancing drugs can be dated back to the 1930s when Dr. Ruziicka invented steroids to be used as antibiotics. However, the purpose for steroids then was to fight hazardous health conditions like cancer. It didn’t take long before the Russians started injecting themselves with these steroids while going to the gymnasiums and during world championship competitions. It could really work well as the ones without steroids would fail terribly. Since then steroids have been known to be the muscle builder. As seen in other countries like the US, the use of steroids only becomes illegal if no prescriptions are present. On the contrary, in the land of Mexico steroids are found in the pharmacies and they can be bought even without prescription (Foddy, Bennett&Julian pg.515). We may have a war today concerning the use of these performance-enhancing drugs but even in the ancient Olympic Games, participants used PED’s. During this time, Thomas Hicks clinched the first position in the marathon after being injected by strychnine in the middle way of the event. The international Athletic Federation first rose to action against the use of performance enhancers in the late 1920s (Foddy, Bennett&Julian pg.512). That was when the very first ban was imposed on these drugs. The history of these enhancers is rich with several people clinching titles in various competitions. The PEDs should therefore be legalized as argued below.
People are willing to pay vast amounts of money to watch the best athletes in the world compete no matter how expensive the ticket may be. They will always strive to enter. They are yearning to get a new experience in the field of sports. The new experience only comes with supernatural performance in the events. There are no doubts that the use of performance enhancing drugs are needed for the extra performance which excites the crowd. The PEDs make the muscle strong enough for the athletes to achieve extra ordinary results. One the most enjoyable encounters in the field of baseball was in the late 1990s when the McGwire and Sammy made a race to the sixty-one home runs (Foddy, Bennett&Julian pg.517). It was the most enjoyable moment in the sport's history. Even though the tickets were very expensive, the attendance was marvelous. PED’s make athletic competitions more exciting ultimately driving the surrounding economy positively.
The use of the PEDs in sports to some is unfair. No, they get it wrong. In fact, it promotes equality. There should be a constant reminder that some people were naturally born with the genetic merits. In the winter Olympics of the 1960s to 1972, a Finish skier Mantyranta won a number of gold medals. This accomplished skier was found later by the scientists that he had gene mutations. He possessed more Red Blood Cells than a normal human being. His relatives were also found to have the same gene mutations as him which made them win the relay races in the Olympics. (Jin-Kyung pg.177). Here is where the PEDs are of importance. The performance ability of an individual is determined by the ability of the body to effectively metabolize hence the need for PEDs.
There is always a tag of war between the government and the drug peddlers. The big issue here is to reduce the drug lords in the cartel. If the PEDs are legalized, the users will get them without fear. There will be no law breaking in accessing the PEDs. These drugs are highly profitable since now some of the top sports personalities acquire them to boost their performance. These sports personalities are rich so to say (Jin-Kyung pg.180). At around 2013 an Australian report revealed that the use of PEDs was on the alarming rise among the professional sports personalities. The business of drug peddling is estimated to earn annual profit of $650 billion annually. This net worth in the illegal businesses imposes high rates of crime network building globally. If the use of PEDs would be legalized in sports, it would reduce the organization of criminal networks in the doping market. The athletes would easily purchase them.
The rules may be tight, the governments may waste a lot of resources to curb doping, but the truth remains. The athletes will use the PEDs regardless of these restrictions. There is no need for the government to spend much in denying these athletes their chance of achieving success. Once they understand that the stumbling block between them and the success is the government, defiance to the rule of law will set in. Some authors suggest that the elimination of the anti-doping rules is tougher than eliminating doping itself because whether illegal or not, the sports personalities will still use them. The only way out is to legalize them (Jin-Kyung pg.186).
The first goal of the athletes is to ensure they are safe. This should come even with the use of the PEDs. Once the athlete's health status is okay, then they become good enough to go and compete. As the famous journalist from America would quote “freedom would only come that time you will make a belief in what some think are bad decisions.” An example is the 1998 decision by the chief International Committee Juan who recommended the use of substances which aren’t harmful to the human body (Jin-Kyung pg 183). This would give a leeway for the use of the PEDs provided the health status of the individuals doesn’t deteriorate.
Foddy, Bennett, and Julian Savulescu. "Ethics of performance enhancement in sport: drugs and gene doping." Principles of Health Care Ethics, Second Edition (2010): 511-519.
Hartgens, F., and H. Kuipers. "Effects of androgenic-anabolic steroids in athletes." Sports Med, vol. 34, no. 5, p. 13–54.
Longman, J. "East German steroids’ toll: ‘they killed Heidi’." New York Times, [New York], 20 Jan. 2004, p. 1.
Park, Jin-Kyung. "Governing doped bodies: the world anti-doping agency and the global culture of surveillance." Cultural Studies? Critical Methodologies 5.2 (2015): 174-188.
Rabinowicz, V. "Athletes and drugs: a separate pace." Psychol Today, vol. 3, 1992, pp. 25-52.
Schechter, E. J. "Alcohol rationing and control systems in Greenland." Contemp Drug ProblEM, vol. 18, 1986, p. 587–620..
Tufts, A. "Doped East German athletes to receive compensation." BMJ, vol. 3, no. 24, 2002, pp. 24-29.
Zinser, L. "With drug-tainted past, few track records fall." New York Times, 29 Aug. 2004, p. 1.