I learnt so much from Nick Riewoldt’s daring statements about medicine this week.
I learnt that in Riewoldt’s view, illicit drug use amongst AFL gamers is “uncontrolled”. I learnt that Riewoldt believes that the AFL ought to take a “harder stance” on the problem, and that in his taking part in profession he had lobbied them to just do that.
I learnt that Riewoldt believes that if the “three strikes” coverage had been modified to a single-strike coverage, whereby any participant caught utilizing leisure medicine is suspended instantly, it might assist stamp out drug use amongst footballers.
The one factor I didn’t be taught was why I ought to care.
Critically. Why ought to I give a flying fricassee about what substances skilled sportspeople chuck into themselves?
Efficiency-enhancing medicine, certain – I’m a sports activities fan, and so anybody looking for a bonus exterior the principles rubs me up the incorrect means one thing continual. If gamers discovered taking steroids are rubbed out for years on finish, that’s tremendous with me.
Likewise in the event that they take the sector beneath the affect, I’d absolutely help their membership coming down like a ton of bricks on them for letting the workforce down.
However medicine they’re taking for enjoyable, in their very own time? I don’t know whether or not I converse for thousands and thousands or simply for myself once I say this, however huge freaking whoop.
Frankly, if I had been to agree with Nick Riewoldt’s straight-edge philosophy, I’d be fairly hypocritical. Most of my pals have consumed illicit substances at one time or one other, and I’d be livid if, having consumed these substances throughout their leisure time, my pals had been subjected to disciplinary motion by their employer for a matter which is frankly none of their employer’s rattling enterprise.
Oh nevertheless it’s unlawful, you – and Nick Riewoldt cry. Sure it’s. It shouldn’t be, however it’s. So if a participant is breaking the regulation, be at liberty to go inform the police about it.
The distinct lack of “soccer star imprisoned for popping eccies at rave” tales within the information cycle suggests the cops don’t significantly take into account it a excessive precedence, however I’m completely prepared to concede that if a footballer is in jail, she or he will most likely must miss a little bit of footy.
In the event you or Riewoldt are that a lot into regulation and order, go forward. Be a dobber. Personally I feel it’s none of my enterprise. Possibly you assume it’s a few of yours. It certain isn’t any of the AFL’s.
Maybe the most important purpose I don’t care even a little bit bit whether or not AFL gamers are stuffing themselves filled with mind-altering substances each weekend is that I do know for a reality that there’s one mind-altering substance that nearly each footballer does stuff himself with commonly, they usually don’t even go to any nice effort to cover the very fact.
Alcohol is as intently entwined with soccer as Stephen Silvagni with the torso of a full-forward, and it causes extra harm to gamers and people unlucky sufficient to enterprise into their orbit than each different drug mixed.
Consider each footballing scandal. Each assault, each act of public indecency, each lack of bladder management, each offence in opposition to individuals, property and common society that footy stars hit the headlines for – the one widespread issue is is just not pot or coke or velocity or ecstasy or acid or ice or heroin.
We all know what it’s and we all know the destruction these younger males so typically wreak upon themselves and others once they’ve been ingesting.
However Nick Riewoldt won’t ever, ever, ever name for alcohol bans. He’ll by no means demand the AFL crack down on ingesting. He’d slightly demand much more draconian measures be taken within the league’s infinite struggle on harmlessness.
Now, one may say that footballers taking medicine units a nasty instance, and it’s true, it does.
I undoubtedly don’t need my youngsters taking medicine, and I hope they by no means see a well-known sporting hero take them and determine on that foundation that it’s a good suggestion. However I additionally love taking part in my kids music by legendary drug-takers with out struggling a disaster of conscience.
Extra importantly, the one means drug-taking footballers set a nasty instance is that if their drug-taking is made public, so Riewoldt’s suggestion that they be suspended for a primary offence would really make the chance of dangerous example-setting far better.
If all we’re fearful about is the instance we’re setting, we now have a strong incentive to not crack down on druggies, however to maintain the entire concern a secret from everybody.
Medication, I want to clarify, are dangerous. I’m not a fan of them. However I’m additionally not a fan of empty, pointless moralising.
Footballers who take medicine may be hurting themselves. However they’re not hurting me. They’re not hurting you.
They’re not hurting Nick Riewoldt. And it doesn’t matter within the slightest to the sport itself. I don’t care. The earlier the AFL stops caring the higher.