Friday, October 05, 2007
Are you suspicious of pro athletes?
Thanks for all of your comments in response to last night's question. Tonight we want to know what you think about Marion Jones, the U.S. Olympic Gold Medalist who today admitted to using performance enhancing steroids during the 2000 Olympics and lying to federal investigators during a subsequent investigation. Do you suspect most record-breaking athletes use illegal performance enhancing drugs? Submit your comments below and we'll read some of them during the show. Also tonight: a closer look at drug testing for athletes -- we're Keeping Them Honest. Plus, Marion Jones, in her own words. See you at 10p.m. ET.
Posted By CNN: 9:12 PM ET
  31 Comments
I know it sounds cynical, but I think a lot of top athletes use steroids.The bounty is just too great; someone will take that risk.
Posted By Mark D., Boston, Ma. : 9:24 PM ET
It is really a sad thing when all these great athletes resort to drugs in order to win. I feel sorry for the guys that lost because they're really the "winners".
Posted By Victor B., Santa Clara, Ca. : 9:28 PM ET
It wouldn't suprise me one bit if all record breaking athletes used performance enhancing drugs. There is so much talent out there and they are throwing out so much money at them I guess it would make them do what ever they felt they had to do to be on top of their game!

Cynthia, Covington, Ga.
Posted By Cindy : 9:30 PM ET
I think a lot more athletes than we think are juiced up. And once they do 'fess up, I don't think they should be able to "write" a book or sell the movie rights to their life stories.
Posted By Donna , Des Moines ,IA. : 9:38 PM ET
Unfortunately I do wonder about which athletes take drugs to win. It also seems like we don't have a drug test that is effective enough to catch it all so you can never be sure if the winner really won on their own talents and efforts and were helped along the way.

With that said though, I think it must have taken a lot of courage for Marion Jones to step forward now after all these years and admit to steroid use, knowing it would cost her her medals, her reputation, and possibly her freedom if prosecuted. While I cannot condone what she did to win the medals and the initial lies, I am impressed that she did step forward now to set the record straight when it would have been so much easier to stay quiet.

Annie Kate
Birmingham AL
Posted By Annie Kate : 9:39 PM ET
Performance - enhancing drugs are not allowed?

Should Viagra be illegal too?
Posted By Travis, Lexington, Ky. : 9:42 PM ET
I think most take the drugs. The competitive urge is so great and the stakes so high that its probably a temptation that cannot be overcome. I just hope we get better drug tests to detect the usage of the drugs so the people that are competing on their own abilities will have a fair chance to win.
Posted By Suzanne Pratt, Knoxville TN : 9:43 PM ET
Sad to say, but I think it probably brings into question all athlete's careers.
There will always be cheaters, there will always be honest abe's.
I hope the exposure to what has gone on in the past will make the future athlete just play their sport with honor and the drug free body God gave them.
Posted By Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif. : 9:46 PM ET
All those gold medals - stolen from athletes who never cheated. All those honest athletes that devoted years to compete in the Olympics, only to be robbed by those who cheated...
Posted By michelle - norridge, il. : 9:51 PM ET
Since so many athletes have been caught or suspected of using steroids, it's become difficult to believe that the majority of them rely solely on their skill to make them champions in their field.
Posted By Fay, Vacaville, CA : 9:52 PM ET
I agree with others who feel that many "top" athletes have used, or do use, performance enhancing drugs. The worst part of it all is how they cheat the second place finishers of medals, recognition, etc., and how they are misleading people who idolize them.
Posted By Anonymous : 10:00 PM ET
I don’t think athletes whose record breaking performances involve longevity use performance enhancing drugs. For example…Cal Ripken Jr. It seems those athletes that use the performance enhancing drugs peak for a short period of time. Unless of course it’s the Japanese seamen who just seem to be really great at those calisthenics.
Posted By Cheryl, Johnston,RI : 10:01 PM ET
I don't think all athletes use illegal drugs to enchance their performance in the competitions but because everyone wants to win and are under tremendous amount of pressure, some take the easy road success.

But it's just sad that they get away with it for years and years.
Posted By Angela Chicago,IL : 10:02 PM ET
I can't say that I suspect most record breaking athletes are using illegal performance enhancing drugs, but I'm sure many have. It is really sad that the integrity of sports has been ruined because of individuals who can't be content with their God given ability and who always want to have more and be more. Marion Jones stated in her press conference that track and field was a sport that she dearly loved, however if she would have loved the sport so much, she should have thought twice about cheating and lying and clouding the integrity of the sport. It is disappointing.
Posted By Jessica, Bourbonnais Illinois : 10:04 PM ET
I feel sorry for the people who competed against the cheaters for all those years, and didn't win, then found out people against them cheated. How many great athletes were deprived of their due awards?
Posted By Kelly T., Stouton, WI. : 10:08 PM ET
I think it's disgusting that we're worried about steroid use when we have bigger problems to worry about in this country... Our crumbling education system, economic, and environmental issues, etc.
Posted By Kevin : 10:14 PM ET
It seems that today talent isn't enough. Athletes all want to be the best no matter what it takes. What they don't think about is what it does not only to themselves, but those around them especially the kids who look up to them. Who do I blame the almighty dollar.

And it's "Wonder bread helps to build strong bodies 12 ways."
Posted By Marcia, Warren Mi : 10:14 PM ET
As a teacher I find it incredibly difficult to teach integrity to students. As more and more athletes reveal their true selves to the public how can any young child involved in sports learn what is right and what is wrong from their sports heros?
Posted By Heather Fulton, Canada : 10:16 PM ET
i believe people who break records do indeed use steroids or drug enhancements because they would do anything to be the best in the world and they would do anything in their power to make that happen
Posted By Max Beger : 10:16 PM ET
All winning athletes use some sort of synthetic undetectable version of enhancing drugs. It has always been a game of cat and mouse. The problem for the athletes is they all know they are competing against top people using something to get an edge. So unfortunately, it almost breeds this kind of behavior.
Jeff Nead
Canada
Posted By Anonymous : 10:17 PM ET
After seeing the world's fastest woman go down, I think anything is possible, but I do beleive there are some loyal athletes who beleive in fighting for the medal rather than cheating for it. Its a total disgrace how some people can do such things !!!!
Posted By Riad Akram, Dhaka, Bangladesh : 10:18 PM ET
There must be a possibility of athletes using perfomance enhancement drugs. But lets not forget that some of them really have talent and we should not be too quick to judge.
Posted By Anonymous : 10:20 PM ET
Why don't they just make steroids legal and sort of level the playing field (no pun intended). Then let the best man or woman win.
Posted By Charles Hayes, Denver, Co. : 10:24 PM ET
What a sad catch-22 for today's athlete's. They are pressured by coaches and peers to do their best, and so get into the "should I, shouldn't I" steroid question. The reality is that there are so many athletes in every sport from cycling to swimming to Major League Baseball that all use the substances. The unfortunate few get caught while the other are regaled as heroes. What is the answer, I really don't know.
Posted By Jackie, California : 10:26 PM ET
Hi Anderson,
I was a Division I swimmer and knew of athletes who used steriods during their college and high school swimming careers. My thought is if athletes are using steriods in a sport, such as swimming, that has little to no endorsement deals and professional monetary support. Then isn't obvious in sports, such as baseball, football and track and field where there are $100 of millions of dollars at steak from endorsement deals, team championships, professional salaries, etc. that those athletes are OBVIOUSLY doping? Athletes are constantly looking for the advantage, and in big sports that advantage pays big!
Posted By Annie : 10:27 PM ET
I used to be a professional athlete, and wish to remain anonymous...however, I can tell you that ALL the people competing in Olympic level track and field are on many "performance enhancers", whether they are currently illegal, or will be deemed illegal in the near future.
Just as one person on your show mentioned the guy who wouldn't take ice cubes in his drink - I know, I STILL do this - most restaurants make their ice out of tap water, which NO athlete will ingest. At any rate, all athletes are constantly in search of performance enhancers, all the time. Your sport is your LIFE, and absolute obsession. The point I'm trying to make is that I wouldn't feel too sorry for the other athletes...they were on "the juice" too...they just didn't get caught, just like Jones didn't get caught.
The only reason I can think of for Jones making a confession now is that she was offered a lot of money and a plea bargain by someone who is trying to take Barry Bonds down through Balco.
Posted By Middleagedpunk : 10:28 PM ET
Marion Jones is a cheat and a liar. She has dishonored not only herself, but also the Olympics and the American people.

It is a given that most record-breaking athletes are taking or have taken steroids. The types of rapid physical changes seen in these athletes cannot be achieved with exercise and nutrition no matter how much progress has been made in these areas.

The dirty little secret is that today’s athletes know that unless they take steroids they cannot hope to compete with those that do.

Jo Ann
Posted By Jo Ann Matese, North Royalton, Ohio : 10:30 PM ET
Anderson,

Our nation is just waking up to the severity of this issue. A decade ago steroids were rare. I did not see people using them until my sophomore year of college. Now I see high school kids in small town gyms who are users. It is easy to recognize if you've been around it. It is not a coincidence that our high school, college, and professional athletes continue to get stronger and faster. This isn't natural selection, it is an epidemic of performance enhancing drugs.
Posted By Blaine Emery Parkersburg WV : 10:30 PM ET
Yes I think most pro atheltes are taking drugs to enhance performance. It comes down to greed and ego. Everyone made money on the Barry Bonds story. To say that baseball did not know their athletes were taking steriods is ludicous. Still it doesn't make it right. This is not just a problem with athletes, it is also a problem with the win at all costs establishment itself. There is extreme pressure on todays professional athlete to perform at the highest levels.
Posted By Doug Peterson, Algonquin, IL : 10:32 PM ET
I just don't get the whole steroid thing. What is it? People don't like just winning on their own merit or don't trust their abilities?
Posted By William B., San Jose, Ca. : 10:34 PM ET
After hearing her apology, I don't trust athletes anymore. That said, I believe as long as they can get away with it, they'll use those drugs. As one of your regular segments would say, "What was she thinking?"
Posted By Lilibeth, Edmonds, Washington : 10:35 PM ET
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