“…restore the integrity of the game.”
Releasing a report that links some of baseball’s best to the use of performance-enhancing substances, former Sen. George Mitchell said Thursday it is critical that Major League Baseball restore the integrity of the game.
I don’t have a lot to say about this one, and until it briefly came up in cube chat yesterday when a woman asked about it, putting it out there that she was coming at it from a [stereo]typically female perspective of “What’s the big deal?” I wouldn’t have given it any thought at all. I chimed in with my thoughts since I was at a good stopping point in my work and thankfully none of us were rabid sports fans or it could have gotten nasty. That word integrity makes me laugh a bit though because while there are a lot of true fans of the game that are upset by this news, there are a lot more people who are sports fans that are not surprised in the least. Our culture has turned professional sports from leagues and associations to an entertainment industry filled with rock stars.
I’ve been to baseball games, and let’s face it, a lot of them are boring! People go for the camaraderie, and the beer, and the hope that they’re going to see some good dingers! I doubt that athletes and teams would fill the seats for any sport if all they did was stick to good fundamentals and no one showboated. Take out the dunks and homers and 40+ yard runs and uh… Tiger Woods ❓ and people would appreciate the games, but hardly pay through the nose for tickets and special cable tiers. There’s certainly an aspect of drama to the games, and people who have a history with their teams are going to keep up the spirit and rivalries and that’s great, but for most of us, we’re tuning in to see these monstrously fit guys show us amazing feats of sports-osity.
Every time a story about doping or drugs or an athlete having a wild lifestyle comes out, I tend to wonder if culture isn’t as much to blame for its pressure upon these men and women as they are themselves. We put them on pedestals, we pay them ungodly amounts of money — when the leader of a nation makes less than someone who can put a ball through a hoop, there’s just something wrong with that — so why are we surprised when they turn out to be as human as the next person, or that they do “whatever they can” to continue to excel in their chosen field?
I realize I’m on the nerd/geek/’mo side on this one and don’t really care one way or the other about professional sports, but to me this seems no different from a Hollywood actor or actress having massive amounts of plastic surgery to continue their “craft” and keep earning paychecks and awards. No one really bats an eye about that, unless it’s horribly botched or… Joan Rivers, who probably can’t even bat her eyes anymore! And let’s not even start on “singers” that “sing” all their tracks, with the help of talented studio technicians.
As usual, there are more important things we should be concerned with than whether someone used steroids to give the people what they wanted. 🙄 I welcome sports fans to weigh in with their opinions because I don’t have a deep-seated love of the game, as it were, and I’d like to hear some other perspectives on this one.