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Case For Doping in Sports

Here is an interesting and compelling case for permitting doping of various forms in sports:

http://search.japantimes.co.jp/print/eo20070819a2.html

Among other things, as the author suggests, legal doping would permit athletes to close the “gene gap.”

It is odd that the piece appeared in an obscure English-language publication like the Japan Times, given that the author is (in)famous due to his views on other subjects. I wonder if US publications refused to run the piece because it was too controversial.

That would be a shame, because there are some sensible ideas in the piece, and it is on a matter (sports and entertainment) that is not of ultimate importance.

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[quote]Ajax wrote:
Here is an interesting and compelling case for permitting doping of various forms in sports:

search.japantimes.co.jp/print/eo20070819a2.html

Among other things, as the author suggests, legal doping would permit athletes to close the “gene gap.”
[/quote]

I doubt that would happen in practice. generic differences may infact be amplified by some types of doping rather than negated. It would need a careful study to be made to demonstrate his hypothesis though regarding EOP he may have a point, using the ‘upper red blood cell count’ idea.

Then other bio mechanical aspects will factor more strongly, still generically unequal. I dont really see the point of trying to eradicate all unequal physical aspects in order to have winners by effort alone. I dont see the mind-body split as so split as many folks seem to.

Ramble or not, what you suggest makes sense to me and I think that is where sport will go eventually.

What I wonder is which level would have more popular appeal, and would that vary by sport?

I would guess that in most sports, the “enhanced” athletes would be the higher paid, more “professional” athletes. Their performances would be even more spectacular and thus attract larger audiences. One could easily imagine that in MMA and American football, for example. The sight of superhuman athletes in direct physical contact and competition would get fans. The appeal of team sports would probably not be affected adversely, I would guess, becasue the drama of competition would still be there.

I don’t know how more “individual” sports, sports in which athletes compete against a standard like distance, time, etc. would fare, though. Would souped-up pole-vaulters or marathon runners excite more or less fans than today? People may ask what’s the point in engineering a human so that he can jump an extra few centimeters.

Putting opnely engineered humans in a rugby or boxing match, well, that could be real interesting…

[quote]bushidobadboy wrote:
I haven’t read the article yet, but I have long thought that there should be 2 levels of sport. Natural and assisted.

The naturals would be banned from pretty much everything, including creatine, BCAAs, possibly even manufactured protein. Whole food sources only, that you might find in nature.

The second level would be free to do exactly what they want, in the quest for increased performance. Safely monitored by medical professional, now that their drug use was open.

Anyone in the natural group that was tested positive (and then confirmed) for ANY banned substance, would be lifetime banned from the natural group, but could move to the ‘boosted’ group, no problems. I take this draconian stance because once you enter the natural league, you can NOT cheat your fellow competitors, out of respect.

The option to use drugs is there - fine - but why lie to others about being natural, when you can choose ‘the other way’. I accept that it goes on now, but that’s just the nature of human competition. this way would offer the chance to truly pit yourself against your opponents ‘as nature intended’, or go all out, busting records, using enhancement.

/ramble.

Bushy[/quote]

[quote]gswork wrote:

I doubt that would happen in practice. generic differences may infact be amplified by some types of doping rather than negated. It would need a careful study to be made to demonstrate his hypothesis though regarding EOP he may have a point, using the ‘upper red blood cell count’ idea.

Then other bio mechanical aspects will factor more strongly, still generically unequal. I dont really see the point of trying to eradicate all unequal physical aspects in order to have winners by effort alone. I dont see the mind-body split as so split as many folks seem to.

[/quote]

You’re absolutely right. Doping of varous forms affects different people differently and amplifies some genetic differences even as it minimizes others. And then are all the other factors beyond the cellular and neurobiological, such as bio-mechanics, better coaching, better financing etc. etc… The idea of a wholly “level playing field” is a chimera. It’s perhaps not even meaningful, as you note.

the better you are without steroids/doping, the better you will respond to doping. the is no chance in hell it will level any genetic gaps unless those with superior genetics are kept from doping.