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Steroids and Mixed Martial Arts, Part 2

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Luke laid it out pretty well a while back:

It's clear the disarray from the lack of one coherent, enforceable standard is troubling.  The system - as it's currently arranged - makes negligence and cheating only moderately difficult tasks.  Any system is open to corruption or ineffectiveness, but what we have here isn't even remotely deterring.

I don't have the best answers as to why steroids should be banned from professional competition, other than to say the use of them by an athlete doesn't pass the "smell test".  For whatever reason, it just doesn't sit right.  It feels like cheating, but emotions aren't necessarily tools of cognition.  So, by no means am I suggesting that's basis enough for governmental regulation.

To which I replied at the time:

It seems to me that the negative health impact of steroids on the athletes in combination with the advantages they offer in competition is the reason for the pan.
It's just flat out inhuman to present competitors with the choice of 1) irreparably damage their health or 2) compete at a massive disadvantage.

But now with so much more coming out on the topic it's time to come to a more definitive answer.

For my dollar, pro-wrestler Lance Storm makes the case in the most convincing fashion:

Marc Mero was not a very talented guy. When he was in WCW he was not, what you could call an in-ring general or great worker, so why did he have a job? He had a job because he took steroids to get a job he didn't deserve. Steroids gave him the look that the company was willing to push despite his level of ability. Now Marc Mero can defend himself as much as he wants, with if he didn't do steroids for the spot someone else would have, but that doesn't excuse his actions. I was a worker at that time Marc, and I was close to your size and a hell of a lot more talented, and I wasn't doing steroids nor have I EVER. Have you ever considered that you taking steroids cost a more deserving person who wasn't on steroids, the opportunity he deserved, and in turn then put additional pressure on them to do steroids, to get the spot they actually deserved in the first place?
...
his bullshit mentality of "I did steroids because I had to", or "I took pain pills because I had to to make all the towns" is a complete load of crap. This business is tough yes, but less talented, or smaller guys who take steroids to get a job or push they don't deserve just makes it tougher. "Everyone else was doing it" is a bullshit excuse your Mother wouldn't accept when you were 10, Mark, quit using it now. Not EVERYONE else was doing it and those of use who weren't either suffered for it, or gave into the pressure and got dragged down the toilet with you.

That's pretty clear to me. Steroids give an unfair advantage to the less talented and pressure others to risk their health to compete. The death toll that steroids have wrought speaks for itself. Let's cut the shit and do what we need to do to reduce the abuse. More testing, more teaching, whatever.

Update [2007-7-21 10:36:31 by Kid Nate]:Zack Arnold has a good answer to those who blame Dana White exclusively.