Monday, March 21, 2005

Steroid "Controversy"

I highly recommend reading John Perricone's ongoing commentary about the steroid hearings and their aftermath. His perspective, grounded in unorthodox principles like, er, command of the facts, an appreciation for history and a critical perspective on the real issues at hand, is quite inspiring.

I haven't been paying much attention to this issue, mostly because I think steroids are essentially a non-issue and the coverage and commentary of most reporters, columnists and lawmakers is nauseating. I tend to avoid reading about issues and "controversies" that stink of media manufactured scandal and witchhunt, since the quality of reporting and commentary ranges from worthless to dangerous. There are far, far too many people tossing around false accusations and grossly uninformed claims about steroids that have the potential to taint people forever.

One outrageous example - a former Rockies broadcaster, Wayne Hagin accused Todd Helton of using steroids, first in a radio interview and then confirming it with the Denver Post:
""Don Baylor told me he suspected Todd Helton of experimenting with steroids."
Turns out Baylor was talking about creatine, a perfectly legal supplement. Hagin issued a retraction and apology the next day, but Helton was forced to deny he was a Communist, er, steroid user -- and will have to live down several days or weeks of scrutiny because of one man's ignorant claims since there are enough idiots out there who wouldn't know the difference between creatine and Ovaltine - to them, its all "steroids". Helton recognizes this. In response to Hagin's apology, he said "I don't care if it was an accident or not. I am forever linked to it."

Be wary of what you read and hear about steroids.


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