A Question of Priorities

Four of our elected leaders have recently weighed in on the issue of steroids in baseball. George Bush came out against in his state of the union address. Senator John McCain has been obsessed with steroids for months. Representative Nancy Pelosi of California opined on meet the press the other day that pro ballplayers have "a responsibility to the sport and to the children of America." Senator Bill Frist of Tennessee announced that he was prepared to support aggressive action from the federal government if the steroid issue didn't get addressed at a more local level. With all due respect, your eminences, what?!

The U.S is daily enhancing its reputation around the world as an arrogant bully.

Our troops in Iraq are under constant attack, civilian losses are monstrous, and indications are that Iraqis who want to vote in the elections scheduled there for next month will need armed escorts to get to the polls.

The national debt is colossal and growing.

As the scientific community around the world accumulates more evidence of global warming and its catastrophic potential, the most powerful man on the planet continues to dismiss the Kyoto agreement as some other folks shaking hands after discussing a rumor over sushi.

And the president and our Congress-people can't find anything more important to rail against than the fact that Barry Bonds, Garry Sheffield, and Jason Giambi bulked up on steroids?

I'm not in favor of steroids. I hope the folks running the Baseball Players Association will see that coming to some agreement with the commissioner to set up a testing and discipline program similar to the ones in the other pro sports would be good public relations.

Will such a program end the use of banned and dangerous substances by baseball players? No, it won't, no more than tougher programs in the NBA and the NFL have ended the use of banned and dangerous substances by basketball and football players.

But nobody except players trying to set records or players and coaches trying to hold on to their jobs is for steroids. So it's a lot easier and less risky for politicians to come out loudly for purity in baseball rather than, say, an honest, sane, and responsible foreign policy, comprehensive, universal health coverage, or a cooperative, international energy plan.

Ah. I get it. Nevermind

This program aired on December 15, 2004. The audio for this program is not available.

Headshot of Bill Littlefield

Bill Littlefield Host, Only A Game
Bill Littlefield was the host of Only A Game from 1993 until 2018.



More from Only A Game

Listen Live