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Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Fans Reaction to Steroids: Despite cries that the apocalypse is upon us, Murray Chass reports that fans do not seem to care about the steroid scandal, turning out in record numbers.

As I wrote in this post last month, this follows the trend of sports fans ignoring many problems of the players they cheer:

    By and large, fans see the uniform and not the person underneath. They cheer #8 because of his spectacular plays, but do not care about what Kobe Bryant does in his spare time. They cheer the team to the victory, while looking past the fact that human beings with human problems comprise the victors. Now it seems that fans are willing to accept steroid use, so long as their heroes continue to hit monstrous home runs. This is a disturbing trend in sports, and ultimately, the victims will be the athletes themselves. Steroid abuse has been shown to have horrible consequences, even leading to serious illness and death, and the negative effects of newer drugs are not even known. Players may be leveraging their long-term health for current glory, and fans are willing accomplices by turning a blind eye to such abuse.

Baseball should make strides to curb drug testing on its own. The adoption of the World Cup of Baseball, and the accompanying drug testing procedures, is a good start.

Hat Tip: Business of Baseball


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