Professor and Uehiro Chair in Practical Ethics at the University of Oxford
Pro to the question "Should Performance Enhancing Drugs (Such as Steroids) Be Accepted in Sports?"
"It would be much easier to eliminate the anti-doping rules than to eliminate doping. The current policy against doping has proved expensive and difficult to police. In the near future it may become impossible to police.
...Because doping is illegal, the pressure is to make performance enhancers undetectable, rather than safe. Performance enhancers are produced or bought on the black market and administered in a clandestine, uncontrolled way with no monitoring of the athlete’s health. Allowing the use of performance enhancers would make sport safer as there would be less pressure on athletes to take unsafe enhancers and a pressure to develop new safe performance enhancers and to make existing enhancers more effective at safe dosages...
The removal of doping controls would have major benefits: less cheating, increased solidarity and respect between athletes, more focus on sport and not on rules.
[I]n order to justify the current doping controls, these arguments have to justify the ban’s yearly multi-million dollar cost, and the intangible costs, and they must outweigh the benefits we would get if we abolished doping controls. We should focus on health of athletes, not performance enhancement.
Rather than attempting to detect undetectable enhancers, we should spend our limited resources on evaluating health and fitness to compete. There are good reasons to allow performance enhancement, to make sport fairer (in the sense that the rules are equally applied) and to narrow the gap between the cheaters and the honest athletes. It would provide a better spectacle, be safer and less coercive."
"Ethics of Performance Enhancement in Sport: Drugs and Gene Doping," Principle of Health Care Ethics, June 2007
Experts Individuals with MDs, JDs, PhDs, or other relevant advanced degrees, heads of professional sports leagues, and US Congress members with significant involvement in, or related to, performance enhancing drugs and sports. [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
Professor and Uehiro Chair in Practical Ethics, University of Oxford
Director of the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics and of the Program on Ethics and Biosciences in the James Martin 21st Century School, University of Oxford
Head of the Melbourne-Oxford Stem Cell Collaboration
Former Director of the Ethics of Genetics Unit, Murdoch Children's Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia
Former Director of the Bioethics Program at the Centre for the Study of Health and Society, University of Melbourne
Former Chair of the Department of Human Services, Victoria, Ethics Committee, University of Melbourne
Former Clinical Ethicist, Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals
Master of Arts by Resolution, awarded by the University of Oxford, 2002
PhD, Monash University, 1994
Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, Monash University, 1988
Bachelor of Medical Science, Monash University, 1985