The Instigator
Double_R
Pro (for)
Winning
20 Points
The Contender
JamesBluntus
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points

Steroid users should be allowed in the Baseball Hall of Fame

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Double_R
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/21/2011 Category: Sports
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,309 times Debate No: 17986
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (4)

 

Double_R

Pro

Resolution: As Pro I will show why it is unjustified to deny a baseball Hall of Fame candidate a vote for induction based on that players steroid history. Con must show why it is justified for steroid users to be denied a Hall of Fame vote.

This is a debate about the broader context of this issue and does not center on any one specific example.


Steroids: Includes all banned substances recognized as performance enhancing drugs. (Steroids just sounds so much more controversial)

National Hall of Fame: located at 25 Main Street, Cooperstown, NY 13326
http://baseballhall.org......

Rules

Standard debate rules apply. Round 1 for acceptance only. No new arguments in round 4.


No semantics. If your argument will not work on ESPN it will not work in this debate.


If either participant forfeits a round, that participant will automatically lose with all seven points awarded to the winner. The debate will be deemed over at that point if this happens.

Challenger
: Must have at least 3 debate victories. Please do not accept if you do not meet this criteria.

Voters:
Voters are reminded that personal knowledge or opinion of the resolution prior to the debate should not play any role in voting. Votes should be based only on the arguments made in this debate. If you are unfamiliar with acceptable voting criteria, please read the following article before continuing:
http://www.debate.org......

I wish my opponent good luck and look forward to a good debate.
JamesBluntus

Con

Apologies, I did not read all the way to the bottom. However, in RL I am a very experienced debater.

I shall accept your challenge if you would let me.
Debate Round No. 1
Double_R

Pro

Thanks to Con for accepting.

As my resolution made clear, I believe that a players history of use concerning performance enhancing drugs(PED’s) should not disqualify them from induction into the Hall of Fame which has been the case for many players so far. The following 5 contentions will outline my case.

1. PED’s have been around for over a century:

PED reports and allegations have nearly always been a part of baseball history. The first account of PED’s in baseball dates back to 1889, when a pitcher named Pud Galvin was widely known for his use of a substance called elixir which contained monkey testosterone(1). In the home run race of 1961 Mickey Mantle developed an abscess from an infected needle containing steroids and speed, also Hank Aaron admitted to once taking an amphetamine tablet during a game in his autobiography(2). Former pitcher Tom House admitted using steroids in the 60’s and 70’s when he played, estimating that about 6 or 7 pitchers per team were experimenting with some type of steroids or human growth hormone at that time(3). Even Babe Ruth has been said to have missed a game from falling ill by injecting himself with sheep’s testes(4). There are far more examples to list but I believe my point has been made clear. To suggest that this is a new phenomenon is simply wishful thinking.

2. There was no policy against PED’s until 2006:

One of the biggest reasons most people use to justify why steroid users should not be allowed in the Hall of Fame is because of the allegation that they are cheaters. However in order to be a cheater you must break the rules. Baseball did not officially ban PED’s until the spring of 2006 so although it may not be considered “right”, it does make a very tough allegation to justify denying a hall of fame vote(5).

3. Hall of Fame votes should be consistent:

While the Hall of Fame does have guidelines on how to vote, they are very vague and leave it up to the voters to interpret what criteria to use in making the decision. It has always been done this way but this is the first time in baseball history that there has been such controversy and differences in opinion on a particular criteria. This has made the process very unclear, unpredictable, and extremely biased. It is virtually unanimous that there should be a clear guideline on any topic as controversial as this one. My contention is that the only clear guideline is to establish that steroid users who have met all other criteria be voted in, as my next point will continue to illustrate.

4. There is no reasonable place to draw the line:

The ever lasting problem for those who decide that users should be denied induction, is that no matter what criteria is used to make the decision it will in one way or another, be an improperly biased vote. The only positive tests of any significance prior to enactment of MLB’s drug policy were in 2003 when 104 players tested positive for some type of PED. But there was a strict agreement between MLB and the players union that the players who tested positive remain anonymous. The list of these players is currently under a federal court seal(6).

Besides that there is little basis for decision beyond choosing to deny only admitted users, or to include highly suspected users. If you deny only admitted users then you are punishing players for coming out and telling the truth, while allowing players who obviously lied to get in. If you include highly suspected users then you will wind up denying a player’s induction on the basis of “a hunch” as it is nearly impossible to establish who was guilty of use.

There is also the concept of denying all players who played during the “steroid era”. My next point will go more into why this concept is unjust, but even if this argument is accepted then where would you draw the line? There is no way to determine exactly when this era began, and there is also the problem of the players who played part of their careers during this era. It seems pretty ridiculous to set a rule disqualifying any player who played X amount of years from 19XX to 2005 just for being active during these years.

5. Sanctity of the Hall of Fame:

I agree with the common argument that the Hall of Fame is “sacred grounds” and that allowing known or even highly suspected users into it, will ruin that sanctity. However the sanctity of the baseball Hall of Fame comes from the sanctity of baseball history. Controlling this problem was the responsibility of Major League Baseball and they failed in that responsibility by turning a blind eye to what was clearly going on. It is shameful that players had to play during a time when refusing to take PED’s would leave them at a disadvantage over their competition but like it or not, that is what happened. We can not deny our history, and the sanctity of the Hall of Fame can not escape the steroid era.

Conclusion:

We all wish that steroids were not a part of baseball history but there is nothing we can do to change the fact that it is, nor is there any way to accurately distinguish between who is guilty of using them and who was not. Because of this and the reality that these players were mostly a product of the era they played in, there is no reasonable justification for denying any player a place in the Hall of Fame based on the fact that they had admitted or were suspected of using steroids.

(1) http://en.wikipedia.org...
(2) http://www.nytimes.com...
(3) http://www.usatoday.com...
(4) http://www.thenation.com...
(5) http://en.wikipedia.org...
(6)
http://articles.nydailynews.com...
JamesBluntus

Con

JamesBluntus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Double_R

Pro

In the rules section of this debate I set out the following:

"If either participant forfeits a round, that participant will automatically lose with all seven points awarded to the winner. The debate will be deemed over at that point if this happens."

According to the rules of this debate, this debate is now over and my opponent must reframe from making any additional arguments. This is so that I can preserve this challenge for an opponent who will commit. All seven points awarded to Pro.
JamesBluntus

Con

JamesBluntus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Double_R

Pro

ZZZZZZZZZZ
JamesBluntus

Con

JamesBluntus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Double_R 5 years ago
Double_R
I'll try this one more time. Maybe next time I will post a rule that my opponent must have three debate victories to accept the challenge... oh, I already tried that.
Posted by Double_R 5 years ago
Double_R
This is my third time posting this challenge, I was just concerned that I find a worthy opponent who will finish the debate. If you have debated before and plan on finishing then I am fine with that.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by thett3 5 years ago
thett3
Double_RJamesBluntusTied
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Countering massdedators absurd vote bomb.
Vote Placed by MassDebator255 5 years ago
MassDebator255
Double_RJamesBluntusTied
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: yeah huh
Vote Placed by jm_notguilty 5 years ago
jm_notguilty
Double_RJamesBluntusTied
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: ff
Vote Placed by Man-is-good 5 years ago
Man-is-good
Double_RJamesBluntusTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeit.