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Baseball season opener: Athletes and ethicists look at fairness in sport
Date:4/1/2010

(Garrison,NY) Just in time for baseball's opening day, a series of articles in the Hastings Center Report asks what constitutes fairness in elite sports and what it takes to stop cheating. New issues, including the prospect of gene doping and questions about which athletes are really "female," are explored.

  • "Making Sense of Fairness in Sport." In the lead essay Thomas H. Murray, president of The Hastings Center and coeditor of a new book, Performance-Enhancing Technologies in Sports, acknowledges the difficulty of drawing a line between accepted performance enhancing technologies, like ice-filled vests that runners can wear before a long race to cool their core temperature, and banned drugs like steroids. Would it be fair, as some critics of drug testing propose, to simply lift the ban on performance-enhancing drugs that are not deemed harmful? Murray says no because "athletes would confront a terrible choice: refrain from drugs and give up an edge that will often be decisive, or join in an ever-rising spiral of drug use."

    VIDEO: Murray discusses drawing a line on sports enhancement (2:29)

  • "Scenes from the Front Lines." Two former athletes offer an insider's view of sport doping. Jan and Terry Todd, champion powerlifters who are now scholars at the University of Texas at Austin, discuss the pressures on these athletes to use steroids and the challenges of running a drug-free powerlifting association in a sport that has been "overtaken, dominated, and shattered by strength-building substances."

  • "How Close Are We to Gene Doping?" Attempts at gene doping are inevitable in the near future, concludes Theodore Friedmann, director of the program in human gene therapy at the University of California, San Diego. However, Friedmann predicts dire consequences from gene doping because genetic manipulation is highly complicated and can have serious sid
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Contact: Michael Turton
turtonm@thehastingscenter.org
845-424-4040 x242
The Hastings Center
Source:Eurekalert

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