Almost every athlete can be viewed as a hero to someone. That said, what happens when those heros are caught illegally using steroids? Do they still deserve the same amount of respect as before?
On Dec. 13, seven MVP’s and thirty one all-stars were named in the long-awaited Mitchell Report. Out of the 86 names listed in the former Sen. George Mitchell’s report, every one of those players could be considered a role model to any young baseball player or fan.
Bud Selig, the commissioner of baseball, says there will be some action taken against these players. Some say all this mess was Selig’s fault since it was obvious steroids was a growing problem in baseball.
Selig indicated that it is possible that some of the players named in the report may face disciplinary actions. He will review each of the players identified on a “case-by-case basis.” He also added that if action is needed he will respond quickly. However, it seems Selig isn’t responding quick enough, since it has been over a month since the report first hit the stands.
On March 30, 2006, Selig asked Mitchell to investigate steroid use in baseball. Mitchell’s task was to investigate the illegal use of steroids and other performance enhancing substances that were being used by Major League Baseball players. Mitchell is a former senate majority leader, United States prosecutor, and former chairman of The Walt Disney Company.
Roger Clemens is one big time name who is not backing down to the 409-page report. His name was mentioned extensively throughout the whole document, but he denies all allegations
Clemens is a well respected pitcher who has won 354 games, seven Cy Young awards and is a sure lock for the Hall of Fame. Yet, with his name now tainted with steroid use, his trip to the Hall of Fame may be in question.
Clemens took his case to television, with millions of viewers watching his 60 minute interview with Mike Wallace, telling America he did not take steroids. His ex-trainer Brian McNamee claims to have injected Clemens with steroids.
Who should the sports world believe? A trainer who worked with countless athletes his whole life? Or the best pitcher in the past decade who happens to be forty-five years old and still throws a baseball like a “rocket”?
Since sports fans are entitled to their own opinions about this report, Clemens is trying to erase his name from the spotlight. He even went as far as to record a conversation of McNamee apologizing for lying about Clemens’ steroid issue. Sports fans think there is something behind this apology; why would McNamee change his story now?
With everyone coming clean about their wrong doings, it’s hard to believe Mitchell’s research is inaccurate. Sports fans just saw America’s golden girl, Marion Jones, stripped of her medals and sentenced to six months in prison because of her steroid use in the 2000 Summer Olympics.
Obviously baseball isn’t the only sport steroids are being abused in. Maybe there should be more investigators like Mitchell out there. Perhaps it should be required that every sport have mandatory testing, no matter what level it is.
Maybe it’s time to reevaluate who the heroes really are. An athlete’s natural talent should make them a role model to us, but it’s becoming increasingly harder to determine what is pure and what is enhanced.