Friday, August 05, 2016

Sports and Doping

I came by an article in The Huffington Post’s “The Blog” titled, “The Solution To Doping Is To Extend The Blame Beyond Athletes.”  The article underlines the widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) in Olympic and professional sports.  It goes on to say that the numerous bans (and potential bans) could make the Rio Olympics an event with the lowest number of delegations in recent history.

The article explains how the bans levied by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) work on the premise that the athletes are deemed guilty regardless of whether or not they were aware that they ingested a banned substance.  The article points out how, in professional sports, the sanctions that are imposed don’t seem to make a difference.  Some suggest that the solution is to legalize doping as long as PEDs are used under medical control.  Others say that this solution would not stop the clandestine use of PEDs.  Yet others say that assigning liability to those who wield power over the athlete(s), entourage, or team would be a good and practicable alternative.

An important question remains: Why is doping so prevalent?  The article offers an answer.  It indicates that researchers present how this is due to the “payoff matrix,” where the rewards such as prize and sponsorship money, records, fame, and the rest outweigh the risks of doping.  This includes not only being caught and punished, but also the physical harm that could occur following the use of PEDs.

I take the payoff matrix one step further.  I believe that doping in sports is but another manifestation of the distorted mentality that is prevalent in our society.  In fact, it’s its own sport; it’s a competition to see who can use the most PEDs without getting caught.  People want to win and get the better of others no matter the cost.  They want everything that’s coming to them, and they want it now.  It’s all at the path of least resistance because: Why work harder for something when you “don’t have to”?  There’s nothing better than getting something without having to work for it.  For this shameful character trait found in people today, you know who is to blame: blame it on fast foods!

- B. J. T. Pepin

Thursday, June 02, 2016


Now that we have had time to digest the circumstance, I'd like to talk about the event that happened in the Canadian House of Commons recently: Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, à la WWE, delivered a “flying elbow” to a female Member of Parliament (and yes, exaggeration intended).  Actually, the title of Michael Enright’s article, “What the prime minister did was supremely dumb, but so is the reaction,” adroitly summarizes the whole affair.

As Mr. Enright states: “You can usually weigh the serious or silly elements of a political scandal by the time it takes the media to apply the word “gate” to it.  The shorter the length of time, the sillier the scandal.”  So in this case, it took but a few hours for the term “Elbowgate” to get thrown around.  The Prime Minister did not drop or kill someone with a single blow in a supreme act of violence and in total disregard of the pain inflicted.  In actuality, Trudeau accidently bumped the lady, but she was so traumatized that she had to remove herself from the Chamber, thereby leaving her constituents “high and dry” when she missed a vote on an important matter; that’s to say she believed the bump was bigger and more important than fulfilling her responsibilities to the people regarding the subject of the vote.  Some representative!

This is but another example of how low our society has gotten, when so many people purposefully “make mountains out of mole hills.”  Why?  To advance their own agendas, while trying to present themselves, or “look,” better than all others who might not be sympathetic to their belief or cause.  Everyone else is a three-headed monster that is out for everyone else’s blood.

So, what is behind this?  In my view it is quite simple: The “me-me-me” mentality that is so prevalent in our society creates people who are self-centered, self-absorbed, and egotistical, believing that the entire world revolves around them.  This has been manufactured by the conglomerates who continue to sell the idea that the world is theirs for the taking.  They do this by brainwashing citizens into believing that they must get everything that their hearts desire yesterday because they are entitled to it rather than required to work for it.  It’s a perpetual mindset of total disregard for others and what is real.

I feel as if I am headed toward another tirade!  If you too are starting to do the “slow burn,” I think it might be time to resurrect a term that was popular after Trudeau’s father made his own faux-pas.  Therefore, I emphatically say, “fuddle duddle!”  If that is insufficient to appease anyone’s anger, then we might as well blame it on fast foods.

- B. J. T. Pepin