Sports and Performance Enhancing Drugs
April 1, 2015
PHI – 010
Professor Andrea Yusim
In a country that is obsessed with winning and competition, athletes, teams and even fans have tried to gain an advantage against their competition. As athletes become bigger, stronger and faster, the margin and window of opportunity to become the best athlete in their respective sports is surely becoming smaller and smaller. Many people will argue that performance enhancing drugs will help in promoting player health and recovery and that sports in general will benefit overall. In this paper, I will argue that the argument in favor of ...view middle of the document...
” Murray argues that the main reasons to ban performance enhancing drug use is to ensure competitive fairness amongst all athletes, preserve integrity of the athletes and ensuring that the meaning and value of sports remain intact. In arguing for competitive fairness, Murray explains that sports can sometimes come down to a matter of inches or seconds and that the slightest advantage can be the difference in a win, loss, basket made, or a home run hit. Murray then states:
“For athletes who want to compete clean, the threat that they may be beaten by a competitor who is not faster, stronger, or more dedicated, but who takes a drug to gain the edge, is profoundly personal. When drugs are prohibited but some athletes use them anyway, the playing field tilts in favor of the cheater” (Murray, Pg. 1).
In arguing for the integrity of sports, Murray states:
“If drugs are banned, then choosing not to use them is a test of one’s character. A person of integrity does not behave dishonestly. A person of integrity does not seek to prevail over his competitors by methods that give him an illegitimate advantage” (Murray, Pg.1).
Finally, in arguing for maintain the value of sports, Murray writes:
“Performance-enhancing drugs disguise natural abilities and substitute for the dedication and focus that we admire. Performance-enhancing drugs cheapen sport, making winners out of also-rans, and depriving virtuous and superior athletes of the victories that should be theirs” (Murray, Pg. 1).
I agree with Murray’s notion that sports require a fair competitive playing field while maintaining the integrity and meaning of the sports they play.
While sports should be ethical and free from cheating, there are benefits for sports to allow the use of performance enhancing drugs. In the article “Why We Should Allow Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sport” by J. Savulescu, B. Foddy and M. Clayton, the authors argue for the merits of using performance enhancing drugs. While others will argue against the ethics of performance enhancing drugs, Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton argue for allowing everyone the equal opportunity to use drugs as they claim it is not unethical of everyone is using performance enhancing drugs. Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton goes on to state that the values of sports is defined by ethics and spirit however they pose the following question:
“Would legal and freely available drugs violate this “spirit?” (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, Pg. 1).
In arguing against competitive disadvantages, Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton writes:
“There is no difference between elevating your blood count by altitude training by using a hypoxic air machine, or by taking EPO, But the last is illegal…. and by allowing everyone to take performance enhancing drugs, we level the playing field. We remove the effects of genetic inequality. Far from being unfair, allowing performance enhancement promotes equality” (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, Pg. 3).
In the conversation of...