The Explosion in the Use of Performance Enhancing Drugs!

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From Marion Jones to Barry Bonds to Lance Armstrong to Alex Rodriguez, the explosion in the use of performance enhancing drugs (PED) is proving to be an unstoppable force. While 69% of Americans believe steroids use in sports should be banned, a nagging “approval creep” is setting in.

The 31% who now believe PEDs should be allowed in sports is nearly triple the 13% of Facebook users who when polled by Ubercool in 2009 reported that steroids should be legalized, while another 12% were not so sure.

All PED-using athletes are an exponent of the “Darwin on Steroids” trend, and also a phenomenon propelled by the “Time Compression” Ubertrend, converging trends that suggest that evolution and life, respectively, are accelerating.

Young athletesWhile steroid abuse is far less common than the use of so-called recreational drugs, many experts report its application is increasing among college and high school students.

Take Barry Bonds. His record-setting baseball fetched an astonishing $752,467 from fashion designer Marc Ecko, who announced that the baseball Bonds hit for his record-breaking 756th home run would be branded with an asterisk before being donated to baseball’s Hall of Fame.

So, while a majority of fans disapprove of the use of steroids, we also have a culture that indirectly approves of the near-robotic performance of steroid-pumping adults. That undercurrent points to a future that will produce superhuman, android-like performers who will battle each other in near-nightmare-like scenarios, as portrayed in many science-fiction movies.

If you’re skeptical about this outcome, witness the rapidly growing popularity of “ultimate fighting” spectacles, a sport that amazingly enough seems to find growing appeal among female sports fans.

There’s no question that the widespread use of steroids among athletes is causing a “nagging creep” to set in. Already, 13% of Facebook users polled by Social Revolution believe steroids should be legalized, while another 12% are not so sure.

Young athletes are increasingly joining the steroids club. The National Institutes of Health’s ongoing Monitoring the Future study found in its 2004 survey that 270,000 eighth, 10th and 12th graders nationwide (3.4%) admitted steroid use, a 62% increase in use among 12th graders since 1991.

GladiatorsThe evolution of American football players clearly shows the “Darwin on Steroids” effect. The U.S. is breeding their favorite gladiators bigger and stronger, so they can better compete in their virtual “sudden death” matches.

In 2002, USA Today reported that “teenagers, looking up to those elite athletes whose muscles ripple with steroid-enhanced power, are picking up some dangerous training tips, health experts warn.” At the time, estimates of steroids-using kids were in the 500,000 to 600,000 range with abuse by non-athlete females said to be “twice as high.”

Marion Jones merely joins the club that now also includes the once-lauded 2006 Tour de France winner Floyd Landis, who was recently stripped of his title and banned for two years.

The Darwin on Steroids trend is unstoppable because science has become an integral part of human evolution. At the going rate, society will one day join the Romans and hail its “gladiators” with that same famous saying, “Ave, Caesar, morituri te salutant.” Only in our case Caesar is the almighty dollar and those who are dying off are the non-steroid-using athletes.

Lainie Liberti
Lainie Liberti is a recovering branding expert, who’s career once focused on creating campaigns for green - eco business, non-profits and conscious business. Dazzling clients with her high-energy designs for over 18 years, Lainie lent her artistic talents to businesses that matter.  But that was then.

In 2008, after the economy took a turn, Lainie decided to be the change (instead of a victim) and began the process of “lifestyle redesign,” a joint decision between both her and her 11-year-old son, Miro. They sold or gave away all of of their possessions in 2009 and began a life of travel, service, and exploration. Lainie and her son Miro began their open-ended adventure backpacking through Central and South America. They are slow traveling around the globe allowing inspiration to be their compass. The pair is most interested in exploring different cultures, contributing by serving, and connecting with humanity as ‘global citizens.’

Today Lainie considers herself a digital nomad who is living a location independent life. She and her son write and podcast their experiences from the road at Raising Miro on the Road of Life.
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