Regular readers of this space (and I know there are at least six of you out there) will recall my recent rants on the trend towards bad behavior in pro sports. Coaches sneaking video of opponents’ signals, players using performance-enhancing drugs (and the records being set by them), referees in betting scandals; it appears the people involved in pro sports have abandoned their responsibility to the fans, especially the young fans. In exchange for allowing the various sports leagues to operate as business monopolies, all we ask is that they uphold a standard of behavior and sportsmanship. They aren’t.
I haven’t moved off that position one bit, but I have to say that the recent circus that was the Roger Clemens’ testimony before the House Oversight Committee was outrageous and nothing but a grandstand play put on by a bunch of camera-hungry politicians.
Whether or not Clemens ever used performance-enhancing drugs, and what we might think of it on an ethical level, is irrelevant. Even if he did use the stuff, no law was broken. And yet, the committee and the media acted like Clemens was on trial. All of it for some network face time.
The thing that really torques me the most has nothing to do with sports. It is the total lack of priorities shown by our elected officials and the news media.
Do you know what was happening that very same week; in fact, at the exact same time that Mr. Clemens was trying to clear his name before the house committee? The Senate was voting on what types of interrogation techniques we will allow our CIA to use. While the cameras were rolling on the dog and pony show that was the House Oversight Committee’s hearing, our elected representatives were deciding—literally—what kind of people we want to be.
Is it me? Does anyone else see a problem here?