FanPost

Response to an article by Peter Singer

I was thinking of posting this article in the latest "Daily Links" by Marima, but being a lover of philosophy, I thought I would give this special attention.

Some of you may not know who Peter Singer is. Singer is a philosopher, to just put it plainly. When it comes to controversial issues, such as drug use (which is talked about in this article), sometimes philosophers put in their own thought provoking opinions based on the subject. Not to mention in light of a story on Lewis possibly taking performance enhancing drugs, I feel it is appropriate to provide the article, and perhaps we can get a philosophical (or just a plain) discussion on his ideas regarding drug use.

Singer posted an article titled: "Is Doping Wrong?"

Our natural response to this question will most likely be without a doubt: "Of course it is!" It's cheating!" Naturally, I can see the reasoning behind this. I will post up the link in here, give some of my thoughts, and let you guys decide.

http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/is-doping-wrong-#xejWRgOdW0EiRSoZ.99

I get the idea presented in the article. I don't think drug will ever end to be honest. So the question is, should we just legalize it to an extent? Or not?

My personal response to Savulescue is that performance enhancing drugs should stay banned, even if 50% of athletes or whatnot use them. Imo it does give people an unfair advantage. I get the idea of genetics, but the thing is genetics isn't a sure thing when a human being develops over time. The great thing about being human is that we have the ability to change, and adapt ourselves. If you want to be a stronger runner, then start training. You can get stronger too. Kids are not always like their parents, physically or mentally.

With these sports, no matter the genetics, We as a species of human beings cheer for other human beings who are competing with strength, will, speed, smarts, etc. against 31 other teams to win a superbow. We test ourselves against one another to get better. genetics has some part, sure, but are we merely just products (or machines?) of genetics (or programming from our parents?)? (Incidentally this leads to the philosophical idea of personal identity as well)

To take PHDs (Performance Enhancing Drugs), imo, is just like cheating on a test. Sure, you can get away with it, and get a great score.But YOU did not do it yourself. YOU never did, and if you were to receive a $75 prize (or a superbowl trophy), for having one of the best scores on a math exam in your grade (like being one of the best players at your position. Which will help your team in general a lot too) like I did once in 4th grade (didn't cheat though), but the kid who would have studied more than the one who cheated gets one point lower, and did not get the prize, who is to say that is not cheating at all?

Of course, being a guy who loves philosophy, I will present the other side of the argument. What if we unbanned the substances, and ,ade sure athletes were in control of taking them? Making sure their health is not affected by the substances (well actually then the athletes who are not affected will end up being more superior probably. Therefore being unfair)? Is there anything wrong using a substance to better yourself? How different is it, as Savulescue hinted, than using caffeine in the morning to be better awake for the day?

If players took minimal doses, increased their strength and speed, provide entertainment to the fans while playing the sport they love effectively (and not cut from the team immediately maybe), why not? Will we stop watching football? Singer doesn't think so, and neither would I (I wonder if there would be more injuries though on the field, if not at the medical facility. Then again this article was more in line with cycling due to the Lance Armstrong case).

In regards to genetics, if a guy is genetically better than you, and you both train hard, is it not unfair that the guy with the better genetics will always be better than you?

By the way, the whole genetic superiority thing is explored excellently in the film "Gattaca." It's about a boy who is genetically deficient wanting to go up and explore the universe. But because of his genetics, the higher ups won't hire him at Gattaca to be able to prepare, and travel, up into space. And yet, even with his genes, he is able to defy what his genetics says of him, while everyone is telling him that he can't do it, he is proving them wrong each time. It's an amazing movie. Here is the trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JSEty7Qr_c The imdb score is high too.

I don't really have a solid opinion on this. After reading the article (and perhaps my reasoning), what do you guys feel about this? Lets get some philosophical discussions going. :)

The views expressed in these FanPosts are not necessarily those of the writers or SBNation.

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