The baseball world was rocked over the last week when San Francisco Giants outfielder and 2012 All-Star Game MVP Melky Cabrera tested positive for testosterone, earning him an automatic 50 game suspension by Major League Baseball. Almost seven days later, Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Bartolo Colón failed a performance enhancing drug test and also earned a 50 game ban. Each admitted to the use of testosterone outright after they were tested, which added another intriguing element to the case considering players often vigorously deny being caught.
Both suspensions fuel fears that the league could be facing another doping epidemic similar to the one in the late 1990s when a number of baseball’s elite players such as Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were connected with using performance enhancing substances as stated in the Mitchell Report.
Doping scandals have emerged in almost every competitive sporting event around the world, from baseball and cycling to the Olympics. A question raised at a swissnex San Francisco event by kinesiology professor Dr. John Gleaves is, should athletes simply be allowed to use drugs and what would be the cultural and societal impact if that were to happen?