Normally I agree with everything Michael Rome says … in fact, for a while I was paranoid that Michael Rome was actually just a Tyler Durden type character that existed in my subconscious who blogged for Bloody Elbow while I was ‘asleep’. But that doesn’t seem to be the case, since we completely disagree regarding how the NSAC is handling steroid testing. Here’s his take:
NSAC is a branch of the Nevada state government, meaning the government is conducting drug testing completely at random without any probable cause (“being a fighter” is not probable cause).
I’m shocked to see writers across the MMA spectrum approve of this gross abuse of basic rights. Everyone justifies this because it is for the fighters own good, a rationale that is generally used to justify any oppressive government tactic. Is there anybody out there willing to fight for the fighters? From random testing to the presumption of guilt upon a positive test, the entire system is completely bogus and one-sided.
Up here in Canada it’s illegal for your employers to ask for a drug test, except for jobs where you being high could possibly hurt others. And that’s the case here with this testing … it’s not in place to protect a fighter from himself, it’s to protect his opponent. Steroids are an unfair advantage, and without an effective system of policing them you’ve got a situation where users literally get an edge on beating the shit out of the guys they’re fighting.
It’s not a case of hitting more home runs or riding a bike faster. These are two guys engaged in combat, where they’re punching and kicking and doing all sorts of other things to eachother. I see Rome’s point … the government drug testing people is spooky shit, and one more step down the road to 1984. But this kinda testing has been going on with athletes for a long time, and it’s actually kinda overdue in the sport of MMA, where steroids don’t just give one guy an advantage, but can result in another guy being hurt badly.