A wonderful person for whom I hold great respect blogs everyday. I am amazed at her ability to talk. I admire that quality of being able to jot down your thoughts and make them interesting. Mostly I even bore myself. But, in an attempt to keep the flow going, I will ramble.
I am a huge NFL Fan. Recently there was a scandal in Houston as their rookie star linebacker, Brian Cushing, was suspended for the first four games of next season for violating the banned substance policy. This caused quite a bit of controversy as the young man had also won the Defensive Rookie of the Year award for 2009. Apparently there had been whispers around the league that Cushing was using anabolic steroids to enhance his performance. Consequently, all of talk radio and TV sports analysts jumped onto the steroid bandwagon. It was reveal three days later that while he had tested positive for a banned substance it was not steroids but a substance called HCG. HCG is produced naturally in the body in a number of different ways, most commonly from a tumor growth. HCG levels are also elevated after sexual activity. Additionally it is used as a masking agent to hide steroid use, hence its presence on the banned substance list.
The NFL Banned Substance policy is very strict and unforgiving. The basic premise is that each player is responsible for what goes into their body and if they are found with a banned substance they are subject to suspension. My issue with this is that all banned substances are treated equally. I believe that the substances should be categorized in a three tier system to avoid misunderstanding and false accusations, based on their effectiveness at creating an unfair advantage on the field. In my system a Class A offense would constitute proof of anabolic steroid or Humane Growth Hormone use thus creating an unfair advantage for an individual on the football field. A Class B offense would constitute the presence of a masking agent used to hide steroid use. Recognizing that the mere presence of a masking agent is not irrefutable proof of steroid use. A Class C offense would constitute the use of any other banned substance. The punishment for each offense would then be set to fit the crime. Class A offense would result in a one year suspension and loss of salary. A Class B offense would result in a four game suspension and a Class C offense would be a one game suspension and a fine.
By instituting this system fans, management and other players would be more fully informed about the specific infraction and not jump to conclusions about an individual case. At the same time a player would be seriously motivated to NOT use performance enhancing drugs as it could cost them millions of dollars. It would also avoid unnecessary controversy about the degree of the offense. Today, if a player is found with epedrine in his system is treated the same as a player with anabolic steroids in his system. The results on performance of each are vastly different and should be treated differently within the penal system of the NFL.
Causes Thomas White Supports
Kerry Daveline Memorial Golf Tournament for the Melanoma Society. http://www.hacknsmack.org/