With the Olympic Games fast approaching, in all of its ritualised pomp and ostentation, doping in sport has once again become a hot topic for social commentators and pundits to chew over in regards what is seen as acceptable forms of enhancement and the kind which is seen as warranting public condemnation.
I agree that legalization seems to make much more sense than the continuation of intrusive and ineffective and sometime inaccurate tests for doping. The key ethical question for me is the effect on the athlete’s health. Making enhancement legal would allow better monitoring. It would also increase the ability of the athlete to make informed consent since they would be able to get a broader opinion of the safety of a given enhancement.
The other reality is that enhancement by itself will not produce a gold medal athlete. They would still have to train and improve their technique and perform at their peak ability the day of the competition. Thus enhancement does not mean automatic achievement, it is just one piece and not even the most important.
It would be interesting to look at more radical enhancement. Would the Six Million Dollar Man be a legitimate competitor at the Olympics?
Posted by Chrontius on 06/12 at 05:57 PM
At some point, we’re probably going to run out of unenhanced people who want to become athletes. The Olympic Games have been running for 2879 years, and I doubt they’ll last that long to come if we don’t start thinking about the finite supply of athletes we will face when the germline starts accumulating enhancements, and parents start dabbling in safe, reliable prenatal and neonatal surgical interventions.