Drug Test: End The Steroid Era
Steroid use in sports is one of the biggest debates when it comes to organized sports. The number of athletes turning to the use of illegal substances to gain an advantage is growing rapidly. Athletes trying to get an edge on their competitors has been around since the ancient Greeks when they would try things such as caffeine and sugar. Even recreational drugs were used in the 1800’s such as cocaine to try and improve their abilities. Steroids that are used today have expanded from the older techniques like caffeine and sugar, which the world population uses everyday now and athletes are trying new things to make sure they come out on top. Allowing mandatory drug testing will help sports in many ways. The need for regulation and control over the drug problem is huge and there is only one solution. Mandatory drug testing should be allowed in athletics in order to maintain the health and safety of athletes along with preserving fair competition within sports and preventing consumer fraud.
Mandatory drug testing in athletics will prevent steroid use and maintain the health and safety of the athletes. Performance enhancing drugs come in many forms. Each have their benefits if an athlete was to use them to gain a competitive edge. With the performance gain the athlete may experience, there are many health reasons one should not use the drugs. To start out, steroids raise the heart rate and while performing a difficult task, the heart is already beating fast. This raises the chance for a heart attack significantly. According to Chittom and Griswold, “In 1991, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) deemed steroids controlled substances due to their associated health risks” (Chittom and Griswold, 2013, page 1). The list for side-effects go on as Bouchard and Sprague state, “Deaths related to heart attack as a result of such use are documented in the scholarly literature. Anabolic steroids can decrease the body's so-called 'good cholesterol' and will increase blood pressure in the user. Aggression, hostility and depression are known side effects of these synthetic chemicals” (Bouchard and Sprague, 2013, page 1). Steroid users can often go through many unwanted body changes such as baldness, male testicles shrinking, decrease in sperm count, inability to have children, and increased breast size. For the women using steroids, they can experience body changes that make them have more man-like qualities. The effects of the drugs have proven to be harmful and sometimes even fatal. From Bouchard and Sprague, during the 1960’s, a cyclist in the Tour De France died after using amphetamines to boost his aerobic capacity (Bouchard and Sprague, 2013, page 2). Many people against mandatory drug test say there are privacy issues. There is a loss of privacy when it comes to drug testing but when mandatory testing saves lives of athletes it will be well worth it.
Preserving Fair Competition