Just how refreshing would this be: "Yes, I did take the performance enhancing drugs that helped to create the spectacle of my achievements on the field. I did it to make a better show for the spectators, and to boost my own self-esteem. I chose to do this because of my own personal priorities, not out of any sense of peer pressure. I believe that the only way I could compete and to win in my endeavor was to artificially stimulate my body's own natural chemistry. Time and science may later prove me wrong, but I expect that, given the choices I have made with my life and career, this will ultimately be the most satisfying path for me."
Floyd Landis is a cheater? Barry Bonds? Tom Cruise? Okay, maybe Tom didn't take steroids or testosterone. Maybe he just gets high on life. But the dilemma still remains: If the expectations for a given sport or profession continues to rise, won't the need for increased performance ramp up right alongside those expectations? Legalizing drugs - illegal drugs - always falls apart after you start to consider the impact of those drugs on the youngest or most naive users. This is profoundly true as well in the case of steroids. High school athletes injecting themselves with syringes in order to take their game to the next level seems ridiculous, but it happens. Is there anyone who still believes that drugs aren't just as prevalent in college sports as they are at the professional level?
What if we could agree on a three or four year grace period, during which all the records and competitions could be scaled back. Let everybody dry out first. Then let us all appreciate the magic of a single home run, instead of the seventy that we need now to be impressed. Take a moment to contemplate the challenge of riding a bike for two miles, then twenty more, up the side of a mountain. And maybe, just maybe, we can all be impressed by the character of our sports heroes again - the ones who don't need to talk to their lawyers before they comment about the big game.