Marion Jones takes step in right direction by confessingSunday, October 21, 2007 By Matthew Jordan
Competition is at an all-time high in professional sports and athletes will do anything to gain an edge. Performance-enhancing drugs are the latest craze in the obsession to be the best. Unfortunately, when athletes commit the crime of using steroids and are even caught red-handed, they often lie and rarely admit to using them. Though guilty of steroid use during the 2000 Sydney summer Olympics, Sprinter Marion Jones is an example of doing the right thing. It is true she made President Bill Clinton look like a man of honesty when she attacked anyone who called her a cheater, but in the end she did the honorable thing and confessed to her crime. Remember that she is the same person who held press conferences where she rebuked all who accused her of steroid use. She is also the same person who filed a lawsuit against Victor Conte for slander. So why am I saying she did the right thing? Well, looking at the positives, and I don’t mean a steroids test, she didn’t pull a Floyd Landis and say that the evidence was incorrect. She didn’t pull a Terrell Owens and have her agent talk for her. She spoke to all of America expressing both deep emotion and what seemed to be genuine sincerity. She announced her retirement from track and field, a sport where she still was a premier star. She gave back her medals in a showing of remorse and reconciliation. The fact that she cheated is an embarrassment to all Americans, and the fact that she lied so profusely makes it worse, but she found it in herself to come clean. She will likely serve prison time for her actions. It is time that the American public not dwell on the negatives (the list is long), but look at her as the first steroid user to come out and tell the truth. Baseball-star-turned-author Jose Canseco wrote a book revealing steroid use full of accusations and finger pointing, but only to profit financially. Jones, on the other hand, is trying her best to right a mistake that is more than regrettable. Mark McGuire is still missing in action regarding the programs he claimed to start in the fight against middle-high school steroid use. Sammy Sosa pulled the old “no hablo ingles” in front of the Congressional committee. And Barry Bonds still seems to need the mysterious “arthritis cream.” At least Marion Jones apologizes when she is caught and acknowledges it—a small step in the right direction.