Should Barry Bonds get into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame (argument in favor of Bonds)

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Whether or not the use of performance enhancing drugs is ethical or not is irrelevant as it is not a criteria for election. Even if it is eventually proven that Bonds did use PEDs, this alone is not a violation of Hall of Fame requirements. If ethical and moral behavior were a factor, many existing hall of famers may need to be re-examined and removed as even the great Babe Ruth was known to abuse alcohol. Regardless of personal conduct or ethical choices, Barry Bonds has not been banned from baseball and has not violated any of the criteria for being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Therefore, any consideration for his nomination should be objective and consider only his accomplishments on the field. One argument for preventing Bonds from entering the Hall of Fame is that he used PEDs which are not only a banned substance, but also would give him an unfair edge making his numbers invalid. Players who have been found to use illegal substances are often given an asterisk next to their record that places a question mark on the validity of the accomplishment. Yet, this assumes his batting was based on drugs alone. It is impossible to make this determination conclusively. Even if a player used anabolic steroids, scientific studies have mixed results making it difficult for an absolute conclusion to be reached. In fact, if PEDs were all it took to become a professional athlete the use of these drugs would be out of control in the amateur leagues as well. After an intense study of steroid use and it’s affect on athletes, they conclude that although the data suggests that well trained athletes may have a greater strength gain while taking anabolic steroid compared with placebos, the data are insufficient to allow any firm conclusion about the efficacy of anabolic steroids in enhancing overall athletic performance. (Braunstein, et al. 392). These results indicate that by taking steroids, a professionally trained athlete such as Bonds may have gained strength, but this would not have had any impact on other hitting factors such as swing, eye hand coordination or the ability to determine which pitches to swing at or not. In other words, an athlete must still have talent and ability to be successful. If these drugs do assist in this, the impact appears to be minimal. Additionally, according to Hartgens, most studies prove that steroid use alone does not increase strength. Based on available well designed studies it can be concluded that the impact of enhance the effects of strength training. (528). Therefore, the use of steroids does not eliminate the need for an athlete to train and certainly would not replace a lack of ability or talent. The talent of Barry Bonds should not be called into question. Though it might be argued any edge he received from these drugs might have been cheating, it should also be considered that Bonds was not alone in taking steroids. This does not validate usage of the drugs, but it does demonstrate that even if these drugs did give an athlete an edge, it is not much of an edge if many other players are taking these same substances. In one confidential survey and testimonial of former users and coaches suggest that around 80-100 percent of national/international standard body builders , weightlifters and field athletes use anabolic steroids. (Choi,349). Though the use of anonymous individuals might be suspect, it does indicate that the use of steroi