By: RICKY LINDSAY, STAFF COLUMNIST
Performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) and sports have become well acquainted with each other over the past several years. Last week on Tuesday, the topic took center stage, as new developments of PEDs in sports broke out within hours of each other.
According to a report by Sports Illustrated (SI), Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis allegedly used a banned substance found in deer antler spray while recovering from his torn triceps injury early this season. Lewis simply shrugged off the allegations, and the topic wasn’t viewed as a big deal by the public.
There were also reports of players from 2012 Alabama Crimson Tide National Championship team using the same banned substance that Lewis allegedly used. That again, wasn’t a big deal with the public.
Earlier that day, several Major League Baseball players, including New York Yankees’ star Alex Rodriguez, were accused of using performance enhancing drugs after their names were on lists given to the Miami New Times.
When this news broke, the general public made this a huge deal, calling the players cheaters. I was disappointed while learning the details of another PED scandal in baseball.
This whole situation shines light on an atrocity; a double standard that is in place with PED usage in sports.
It’s not a big deal when the public learns about PED use in football, basketball, or hockey. These players are never referred to as cheaters, as jokes are made about the situations, and everyone forgets about the situations eventually.
However, if news of PED use in baseball leaks out, whoever has used the substance is immediately labeled as a cheater, and it remains with the player for their entire career, if not life.
I agree, if you use PEDs in baseball, you are a cheater. You’ve taken away the pureness from the game while trying to gain an unfair advantage.
However, I believe that with allegations in any sport, not just baseball. I’m not going to simply forget about Ray Lewis’ alleged PED use just because he’s considered the greatest defensive player of all time.
Look at Barry Bonds, for instance. He’s arguably the greatest hitter of all time in baseball, and people will never forget about his alleged PED use.
If you’re going to label someone as a cheater for PED use, label everyone that has used PEDs as a cheater. It’s not fair to keep the double standard alive based on which sport the PED use occurred in.