Instigator / Pro
4
1655
rating
60
debates
66.67%
won
Topic

THBT Doping Should Remain Illegal in Sports Within US

Status
Finished

All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

Arguments points
0
3
Sources points
2
2
Spelling and grammar points
1
1
Conduct points
1
1

With 1 vote and 3 points ahead, the winner is ...

Sum1hugme
Parameters
More details
Publication date
Last update date
Category
Sports
Time for argument
One week
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One month
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Unrated
Characters per argument
10,000
Contender / Con
7
1635
rating
27
debates
72.22%
won
Description
~ 544 / 5,000

Burden of proof shared, no new arguments in final round. No kritiks.

Dope: administer drugs to an athlete in order to inhibit or enhance sporting performance.

Sports: all forms of competitive physical activity or games which, through casual or organized participation, at least in part aim to use, maintain or improve physical ability and skills while providing enjoyment to participants, and in some cases, entertainment for spectators. Chess is not considered a sport for this debate.

I repeat, opponent cannot argue that chess is a sport.

Round 1
Pro
The argument for banning doping is surprisingly simple, and an airtight logic.

A: We should avoid any unnecessary risks within sports, and ban them if possible.
B: Doping gives an unnecessary risk within sports.
C:  We should ban Doping in sports if possible.

A is a logical basis for sports. Even the health encyclopedia offers much advice and standard procedures for any sports. Indeed, even with people's free will, we do not see them avoiding wearing helmets in football in order to perform better, or avoiding lifeguards for the swimming Olympics, despite nearly zero safety incidents overall. Sports has a lot of entertainment value, but people also have the right to avoid unnecessary suffering. This is a human right that needs no backing. Needless to say, the idea here is easy to see.

B is a commonly known knowledge. While the sports innately have unavoidable risk, drugs bring in an external risk that is entirely avoidable. If one needs evidence, one only has to look at the experts' analysis. A scholarly paper establishes significant correlation between doping and negative health consequences. "There is also evidence that the use of doping agents such as anabolic androgenic steroids, growth hormone and other anabolic agents, erythropoietin and stimulants conveys considerable health risks that include, but are not limited to: cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, mental health issues, virilisation in females and the suppression of naturally produced androgens in males." All doping carries the inherent harm to the human body. There's simply no way around it. Plainly, B is true.

C is the conclusion. Now note how I carefully said "if possible". Of course, Con will bring up our failures and scandals, our inability to prevent doping despite the logic introduced within A and B. So the question is, is it possible? Many contenders bring up the "prisoner's dilemma", where under no punishment, doping would give the cheater an advantage. But of course, the solution is then to make doping an offense, such that if the other person does not dope, the possibility of being found out would discourage the cheater. US may have had a slight problem with drugs, but no doubt borrowing from a more effective country could resolve the legality problem. UK notes that the establishment of "random participant" and the control officers combined with amount of funding is enough for them to reduce the vast amount of cheating. I do not think US has quite implemented this, so unless Con is able to knock down UK's plan, the minister's analysis stands strong well enough.

Sports is all about fairness and equal opportunity. If we allow drugs, we allow them for all the athletes. Yet, all athletes would prefer being equal in their natural state, compared to everyone taking drugs. Even a minor health risk would be unnecessary, resulting in the same solution as using strict legal frameworks to stop people from taking drugs. If this is not enough, incentive based structure could also help -- rewarding athletes for streaks of not using drugs would greatly inspire everyone else to do the same. The unfairness of drugs create an unnatural state of sports. The impact of allowing drugs would be to sacrifice everything merely for entertainment. And we do not want people to be reduced to means as an end. The respect for their dignity and life is the most important thing in any society.
Con
  Thank you Undefeatable for this topic. My argument is also a simple one. I argue that while there should continue to be well-regulated anti-doping sports leagues; there should also be, minimally to unregulated leagues where athletes can take whatever substances they want to give them a competitive edge. 

  The system I propose better applies the concepts of fairness to sports where athletes that want to dope, now have the freedom to do so. The competition would lie in the fact that all the other athletes are probably also doping, removing the point about unfairness.

  Furthermore, the system I propose is fundamentally more American than the restrictive and shortsighted athletic programs my opponent supports. It's more American because it better embodies the value of freedom that this beloved country holds so dear by putting the responsibility of the health of the individual in their own hands, rather than the ever-extending arms of Big Brother. My opponent's argument is shortsighted because it ignores the possibilities that could come about from having doping-allowed leagues of athletes. Such possibilities as the huge monetary gain that would come from having this obviously interesting avenue of entertainment, and the scientific advancement that will be had from being able to study the effects of practically every drug's capacity to increase human performance at the highest levels of competition.

  As for unnecessary risks, the lines of what constitutes "necessary" and "unnecessary" risks become extremely blurred in the realm of professional athletic competition. This is especially true because the nature of athletic competition is risk-taking. In fact, competing at all is a risk in itself, that many mothers (and politicians) would be quick to label as "unnecessary." Take a fight for example, in the heat of the moment, the fighter isn't thinking hardly at all, if at all; they are reacting. All ideas of which strike or takedown attempt were "necessary risks" or "unnecessary risks" are retrospective. In the same way, only through scientific advancement of the study of these drugs could we really know what risks are being taken. My opponent's initial premise is necessarily retrospective, and therefore, ill-defined.

  "We deserve the best athletes that science has to offer." - U/A
Round 2
Pro
Firstly, Con tries to say that the benefits of allowing the doping as potential entertainment plus testing the drugs would be a great gain for society. Yet he has not shown that the evidence we already have is insignificant. What do we gain by further affirming steroids’ negative health nature, other than asserting the people as means to an end? Con has dropped the dignity of a human being and the importance of their lives. He has dropped the idea that sports should have the least amount of risks possible.

Next con tries to say that with regards to fighting that many lack of restrictions infer that the artificial addition of hazards would not be problematic. Yet the slippery slope is apparent. What next? Razor blades in the arena? Using sledgehammers? No referee at all? There is clearly a reasonable stopping point and as few deaths as possible. The tragedy of a lost life far exceeds and entertainment value the fight may have received. As such, even in no rule arenas, the fights are still well under control and nobody tries to bite off your ear in MMA or claw out blood with your nails. My point stands. 
Con
  My opponent has dropped the point that giving the responsibility of one's own health into the hands of the individual is fundamentally more American than stripping it and relinquishing that right to the government. He has also dropped that his own standard of what constitutes an "unnecessary" risk is not defined whatsoever. The premise of his whole argument is based on an arbitrary, ill-defined, retrospective standard of risk management. My opponent could shift this squishy standard to say that even eating a single french fry is an unnecessary risk to an athlete if there is no clarity of what he means by "unnecessary". 

  It would do well to point out to my opponent that not every performance enhancing drug is an anabolic steroid.

  As stated I do support a well-regulated league of sports competition where competitors have the ability to compete in what my opponent calls the "natural" way. However they should also have the freedom to compete under the influence of whatever substances they choose, within a league that permits it.

My opponent says:

" Yet he has not shown that the evidence we already have is insignificant."
  The knowledge we have of the effects of different performance enhancing drugs does not devalue the knowledge we could gain. In other words, I don't have to show that it's insignificant in order for further knowledge to be valuable.

My opponent also states:

What do we gain by further affirming steroids’ negative health nature, other than asserting the people as means to an end?
  Since I am proposing that the athletes dope voluntarily if that's the league they wish to be in, then there is an instance of mutual means, where the study is mutually agreed upon. So my opponent's moral argument fails.

  Additionally, my opponent commits a straw man fallacy when he states:

"con tries to say that with regards to fighting that many lack of restrictions infer that the artificial addition of hazards would not be problematic."
  I argue that it should be the right of the athlete to decide which league, doping or anti-doping, within which they wish to compete. The individual athlete should be allowed to decide for themselves what is "too hazardous" or "unnecessarily risky." The fighting example served to demonstrate that the sphere of athletic competition further muddles the already ill-defined, short sighted, and restrictive policies of my opponent. My case for two separate leagues blends both the positive aspects of my opponent's regulated league, with the natural freedom that a dope-allowed league of sports necessarily embodies.

   His rebuttal to this straw man is a slippery slope fallacy. We should not do "x" because "z" is perceived to be the end result, without a clear "y" [1]. But performance enhancing drugs are not a sledgehammer. As a matter of fact the comparison between two people fighting without weapons and two people fighting with weapons, even under the influence of steroids does not even touch upon the difference of potential damages in that competitive arena. My opponent's logic would have one believing that if they allow fighting in the hockey rink for the purpose of entertainment, next they will allow guns because "blank".

He states:

"He has dropped the idea that sports should have the least amount of risks possible."
  First, my opponent hasn't defined what constitutes a risk. Secondly, following this premise would lead one to  a game of American Football, where there is no physical contact, or perhaps they sanitize the ball every play. It's a ridiculous premise that leads to absurd conclusions. I say, let the athletes choose for themselves what risks they want to take to succeed at what they want to succeed at. That is the best way to respect their autonomy.




Round 3
Pro
Here con points out the good old freedom argument and tries to extend my argument to its extreme. Here, I will offer a compensation and reasonable explanation for why we'd allow athletes to eat french fries, but not take doping. Firstly, the french fries is a self satisfaction, while doping is largely a gain for the masses. People would hardly feel accomplished if something else won the race for them. Secondly, if an appropriate net benefit was given, then it could potentially justify doping. For example, if one person doped while the others did not, and he was in poverty, with the gain being fame, countless finances, and prizes that would support his family the rest of the life, then we would have no choice but to support his doping. However, while the individual may dope, when each individual's interest competes against each other, it's clear to see that *everyone* would want to dope (as a result of collectively applying my logic), ridding of the personal benefit, leaving only the masses (audience) gain.

In the end, Con is left to disagree with my argument that people cannot be treated as means to an end. No athlete would want to suffer harm without any clear benefit. Con has not supported the idea that the more physical ability is generated, the better off the audience is. By this logic, CGI would arguably be the most impressive physical ability, and we would encourage showing off fake sports. Hell, let's get rid of humans altogether. We're not physically the strongest out of all species, nor the fastest. Sports is not only about entertainment -- it is also about teamwork, showing our abilities, our hard work, showing off who we are as human beings. It is not about how far we can bring ourselves while hurting our bodies. Otherwise, we might even have sports competing who can slice off their own arm the fastest, or eat their own liver the quickest. 

Con repeats that we have more information to gain. I have not seen any impact where this drug could bring. Con has not shown, despite the decades of doping, what this "research" has shown us other than the negative side of drugs. So Con is encouraging further negative information at the cost of the athlete. I urge voters to think about this before accepting his notion.

Finally, con says that the athlete has the right to choose how safe he wants to be, but makes no remarks on how they are not allowed to throw away their helmets in football, nor willy nilly crash into others in NASCAR without receiving negative feedback from the public. Con shows off a vague "freedom" idea, but does not tell us why we deserve to have this freedom. I see only the negative health impact on the sport, and encouraging others to sacrifice their bodies to perform better. Rather than suppose natural training regiment or encouragement of improving your body normally, we would encourage everyone that artificially boosting muscles is the way to go. The message this sends seems horrible to me, at the very least.

Con tries to negate my unacceptable risk by telling us of the unavoidable risk inherent of sport. It seems he once again missed my point. There is no need to add even more risk on top of the risky sport. Wear your seatbelt in NASCAR. Don't let the Olympic swimmers vote off their lifeguard, as useless as they might seem. Don't bring a weapon to MMA.
Con
Thank you for your response.

0.
"Here con points out the good old freedom argument..."
  My point serves to demonstrate that since the ideal of freedom is deeply held in America, it would be more in line with American ideals to allow both proposed sports leagues to exist. The anti-doping one for those who desire to have dope-free competition; and the doping-allowed one where those athletes with the desire to dope may do so on a level playing field, not taking advantage of those who follow the rules in what my opponent would have be the only option for american athletes. In this way, my proposition is more American than my opponent's and therefore, is more suited for the context of American sports.

"Con shows off a vague "freedom" idea, but does not tell us why we deserve to have this freedom. "
  We deserve it because Liberty is a natural right of persons. But I'm not here to justify the Ethics of Libertarian Philosophers, rather to assume those ideals that America was founded on in the context of determining American Policy.

1.
Firstly, the french fries is a self satisfaction, while doping is largely a gain for the masses.
  Doping (in this debate's context) is for increasing athletic performance. If one is a bodybuilder, then it's for muscular size. But there are other uses of performance enhancing drugs than gaining muscle mass, like being able to ride a bicycle faster. Additionally, fries cause only harm to an athletes performance, whereas PED's enhance it. My french fry point mainly served to demonstrate that my opponent's totally arbitrary standard of risk evaluation defeats his own reasoning and "airtight" logic. He cannot determine with any measure of reliability what constitutes an unnecessary risk, or even what constitutes a risk at all. For example, my opponent cannot tell us if amateur boxers should wear headgear, because he has no method of measuring the risk involved with wearing one vs not wearing one. Is it protection for face lacerations; or is it just more weight to throw your brain around when you get punched? He cannot tell us if a gymnast should attempt a double-back-handspring in an attempt to win their competition. In the gymnast example, does the answer change if in one particular, the competition is a small town demonstration; while in another particular, the competition is for an Olympic Medal? My opponent cannot answer these because his idea of risk management is not applicable to every sport, and frankly, may not be applicable to any sport at all.

"People would hardly feel accomplished if something else won the race for them."
  This is a null point for two reasons: 

A. The athlete is still physically doing the task. An unathletic person is negligibly unlikely to win a professional athletic competition even if they were doping, especially in non-combat sports.
B. In a league where doping is allowed, the competitive element would not diminish, and therefore, the satisfaction of reward would not diminish.

2.
" if one person doped while the others did not, and he was in poverty, with the gain being fame, countless finances, and prizes that would support his family the rest of the life, then we would have no choice but to support his doping. However, while the individual may dope, when each individual's interest competes against each other, it's clear to see that *everyone* would want to dope (as a result of collectively applying my logic), ridding of the personal benefit, leaving only the masses (audience) gain."
  This is exactly why I propose a league for those with the desire to dope, separate from the anti-doping sports leagues. The personal benefit of doping aside from an easier time winning competitions, is setting new personal records. PR's are a huge motivator for athletes. Being better than you were the day before and breaking your own records are just as important as breaking world records and winning competitions. 

3.
"In the end, Con is left to disagree with my argument that people cannot be treated as means to an end."
  My opponent ignores that if an athlete agrees to be a part of a study, that is a volitional choice.

4.
  My opponent posits another strawman:
"Con has not supported the idea that the more physical ability is generated, the better off the audience is."
  I am not arguing, "audience benefit is directly proportional to physical ability of the athletes." I am arguing , "Audiences will pay to see doping-allowed sports. Therefore, the audience will benefit with entertainment, and the athletes will benefit monetarily."

"Otherwise, we might even have sports competing who can slice off their own arm the fastest, or eat their own liver the quickest."
  This is of course my opponent's attempt to destroy his straw man construction, and can be dismissed summarily.

5.
"Finally, con says that the athlete has the right to choose how safe he wants to be, but makes no remarks on how they are not allowed to throw away their helmets in football, nor willy nilly crash into others in NASCAR without receiving negative feedback from the public." 
  In the football example, this is an example of a player breaking the rules of the game. I never argued that they should be allowed to break the rules of the game at will. In the same way, I'm not arguing that football players should be able to start a play with a player passed the line of scrimmage. The rules of the game are not always the same as the safety guidelines of the sport. I argue that the safety guidelines of one league should simply allow doping, this does not necessitate any other change to the rules of horse-collaring or wearing a helmet. 

  In the NASCAR example, there's several things wrong:
A. This would probably kill the driver, so its extraordinarily unlikely that a driver would do that.
B. We can safely presume that NASCAR drivers are there to win competitions, otherwise they wouldn't be in NASCAR in the first place. So it again doesn't make sense that a driver would do that.
C. Audiences are going to pay for what they want to see. If people want to see a race (maybe with the occasional crash), they watch NASCAR; if they want to see a bunch of crashes, they'll watch a demolition derby. 

6.
" I see only the negative health impact on the sport, and encouraging others to sacrifice their bodies to perform better. Rather than suppose natural training regiment or encouragement of improving your body normally, we would encourage everyone that artificially boosting muscles is the way to go"
  I am proposing an alternative option for people to more freely choose what leagues with what doping policies they want to participate in. If natural training regiments are what one prefers, they have that liberty under my proposal, and vice-versa. As a side note, PED's don't help if one isn't training. One can't  just start 'roidin' and expect to bulk up if they aren't liftin'. 
Round 4
Pro
Firstly, con says my net benefit analysis is arbitrary, however, the gains to see are incredibly clear in the examples I give. To address his worries, it is plausible that a person executing the double backflip will not necessarily win the competition, however, if they believe it will greatly increase their chances, then they are justified to execute this. The proportionality of the risk should match the proportionality of the benefit. If I eat french fries but nevertheless perform excellently, then my risk is justified. On the other hand, if I eat fast food every day and completely lose the competition, everyone would be confused and wonder if I gave up entirely on the sports. If one intended to dope to give up on the sport, I wholly support the notion. But when everyone dopes for this intention, who is left to compete? No one.

Similarly, Con claims that I cannot know for sure if boxers should wear headgear or not, but this is a completely different comparison to doping vs not doping. With wearing headgear, con admits that it prevents lacerations at the downside of possible head concussions. The difference of this is definitely up for debate. But with doping there is no upside. Why? Under the prisoner's dilemma, everyone would want the same boost of doping. Imagine I was allowed to bring a knife to win MMA. I will almost always bring the knife because then I have an absurd reach advantage and sharp weapon that is extraordinarily hard to counter. But now everyone is allowed to bring a knife. It becomes a knife match instead. There's more dangerous injuries, and more precautions would have to be taken, ruining Con's point about entertainment. By Con's logic, we should reduce MMA back into gladiatorial arenas allowing flamethrowers, bombs, etc. Soon enough it'll turn into outright war. But wait, aren't we trying to prevent casualties and bloody wars? The slippery slope is dangerous and a future absurd to think about.

Con's sole contention comes down to our "freedom" argument. He thinks that if the competition is fair, then we ought to encourage athletes to ruin their bodies. Perhaps audience would be willing to pay more, but they will soon hear of what their money is actually used for. Athletes will go to hospital more due to the side effects of the drugs. Some may even obtain addiction and overdose, causing more deaths upon the already dangerous sport. The problem with implementing this doping league, is that to counter act the dangerous drugs, we would have to make the audience pay absurdly high amounts of money in order to help the athletes. If Con's world does work to provide the net benefit that seems to defeat my argument, we would eventually lead to sports being only being able to be watched by the rich. But sports is about encouraging *everyone* rich or poor, to watch the sports. Con claims that it will help the athletes, but within this, we reduce the audience's entertainment (because it restricts the poor from actually accessing the services -- in order to obtain the massive amount of money necessary to overcome the harm, we would likely restrict the ticket prices to be very high!). This counters the core of Con's argument.

In summary, to compare the two worlds...

Pro:
- Athletes live healthily without any additional risks
- If the benefits are still not enough, it is far easier to support the no-doping than the doping league (ex. no doping league may need only $1,000 more prizes to defeat $10,000 in the world of doping league) due to inherent flaws of drugs
- Rational athletes would never join the doping league, destroying con's ideas
- Athletes keep their human dignity and respect, rather than treating them as means to an end

Con:
- Athletes are encouraged to artificially boost their muscles, ruining their bodies merely for entertainment
- In order to fulfill a net benefit ideal, they would have to compete with no-doping league's prices, making their rewards insanely high
- As a result of implementing the insanely high rewards, the sports organizers would likely try to earn as much money as possible, restricting entry only to the rich
- The poor would not be able to watch sports, causing disparity and inequality, the opposite of American ideals
Con
  Thank you for this debate Undefeatable. It's been a lot of fun, but going with the boxing analogy, you've swung and missed again.

1.
"The proportionality of the risk should match the proportionality of the benefit. If I eat french fries but nevertheless perform excellently, then my risk is justified."
  Since my opponent has realized his concept of risk evaluation is totally arbitrary, he introduces the standard of cost-benefit analysis. However, this means he has unknowingly admitted that if an athlete conducts a cost-benefit analysis and finds the benefits to outweigh the costs, then doping is justified. This admission defeats his stance on the resolution and validates my own. It could be stated thusly: "if I use dope but nevertheless perform excellently, then my risk is justified." My opponent has essentially stated that athletic performance justifies risk, which is in stark contradiction to his original point that all risk in sport should be minimized. Therefore, my opponent has refuted himself by attempting to make his vague standard more concrete. So if an athlete arbitrarily determines that a competition prize, like an Olympic medal, is a greater benefit than the harm of PED's, then by my opponent's own admission, that would be justified. 

  I argue that they should have that liberty in a league where the competition would remain competitive by virtue of doping being permitted, rather than the dope-illegal only leagues of sports that my opponent would prefer. My opponent proposes a league in which one single doping individual necessarily despoils the sport of its competitive integrity, and no other alternative but criminal punishment is even considered for the cheater. Such is the nature of my opponent's shortsighted view.

2.
  "Imagine I was allowed to bring a knife to win MMA"
  My opponent touts out the same debunked logic from earlier. But he ignores where I've already addressed this. "The comparison between two people fighting without weapons and two people fighting with weapons, even under the influence of steroids does not even touch upon the difference of potential damages in that competitive arena."

  In other words steroid-allowed league and knife-allowed league of MMA is a false comparison.

3.
"Con claims that I cannot know for sure if boxers should wear headgear or not, but this is a completely different comparison to doping vs not doping."
  It's relevant to the idea of weighing risk in cost-benefit analysis and helps to solidify the fact that my opponent cannot know exactly the measure of risk involved in a decision. This renders my opponent's proposed standard of cost-benefit analysis null, reducing him back to a totally arbitrary standard.

" But with doping there is no upside."
  My opponent has dropped competitive edge for competition victories and personal records as upsides to doping. 

"Why? Under the prisoner's dilemma, everyone would want the same boost of doping."
   This does not take away from the proposed upsides listed above.

4.
"Con's sole contention comes down to our "freedom" argument. He thinks that if the competition is fair, then we ought to encourage athletes to ruin their bodies. "
  More like my favorite contention is the freedom argument.  I argue that it is necessarily more in line with American political Ideals to have leagues that allow doping alongside those that do not. 

FREEDOM=FREE TO CHOOSE
FREEDOM=/=ENCOURAGEMENT

  I claimed that the competition would be fair as a result of doping being allowed for all the athletes in that league. The state of being able to choose is not a stance on if an individual should encourage a particular behavior. 

  Additionally, it is reasonable to believe that once more research is had, competitors will gravitate toward the safest drugs with the least side effects and the most results.

5.
" Con claims that it will help the athletes, but within this, we reduce the audience's entertainment (because it restricts the poor from actually accessing the services... "
  The only way this is true is if a sport implements pay-per-view. But of course, the question of "if a sport promotion should implement PPV" is not relevant to the topic of "should american sports allow doping." My opponent conjectures that the cost of the injuries of doping would raise the price of sports to a point the poor cannot access them. This of course is totally unsupported, and can be dismissed summarily as nothing more than conjecture by my opponent, thrashing against the tide.

6.
  Keeping with the theme of straw man arguments, my opponent elected to end his part of this debate with a whopper. So in similar fashion, we will compare the two worlds, but a little more accurately:

Pro:
All competitors, regardless of volition, should be restricted from competing in any sport whatsoever in America if they use PED's.
- I hate freedom
- No League of sports should ever allow doping in any circumstance, unless the benefits outweigh the costs.
- Shortsighted, restrictive

Con:
- I love freedom and America
- American policy should reflect American ideals.
- Athletes being able to choose for themselves > Athletes being forced to conform.
- Long-sighted, free, profitable, entertaining, and expressive.

_____

CONCLUSION

  In conclusion, there should be dope-allowed leagues of sports in America. Compiling onto the plethora of points my opponent has dropped in this debate and the reiterations of toppled arguments, there has been offered no solid contentions to my arguments. Not to mention my opponent refutes himself, stumbling over his own logic. In the end, American policy should reflect American ideals, and athletes and promotions should already be free to choose these things for themselves. 


Vote Con!