Sunday, October 12, 2008

A really good interview on

There's a really good Superstar to Superstar interview over on (may I also note that this is one of my favorite features on the dotcom), where John Cena speaks with Christopher Bell, creator of the documentary Bigger, Stronger, Faster*, a documentary that takes a close look at the negatives -- and positives -- of anabolic steroid use.

I'm actually quite surprised to see this on, because you'd think that the company would want to distance themselves from ever promoting steroid abuse as anything other than completely unacceptable, but the documentary (which I have not seen yet) makes some very interesting points. Here's a little snippet of what Bell said:

[Tobacco is] a drug that kills 435,000 Americans a year. Alcohol kills 75,000 Americans every year. Deaths related to anabolic steroids – according to the Centers for Disease Control – are three people a year on average. You’re basically looking at those numbers, and go, “Yeah, three people is too many any time.” But what about the 435,000 people who are dropping dead from cigarettes? You never deem anything immoral simply because it’s illegal. It doesn’t mean you can go ahead and use it but it means that I think we’ve deemed steroids immoral simply because they are illegal.

The documentary also takes a look at how steroids basically saved the life of somebody with HIV, and how Congress appears to be, overall, completely clueless about effects of a drug they're admonishing as dangerous.

I think it's also a great film for all those ill-informed spectators who say, with all the confidence in the world, "Nobody could be that big without steroids."

Here's a link to the interview:

Also, Alfonso Castillo of has a review of the film posted here:

This topic also reminds me of a discussion I recently had with a friend of mine, following an interesting blog post by RVD (which I can't seem to find at the moment). Is it fair to restrict steroid abuse from the wrestling industry? Since matches are pre-determined, and theoretically you don't need to be the best athlete to be the most successful, steroids may not give you the "edge" that it otherwise would in baseball, football, boxing, or most other sports.

One might argue, "yeah, but it's still a health concern." True. But take a look at the Christopher Bell comment above, and you'll see that alcohol and tobacco abuse takes FAR more lives than steroids. The only logical argument I can see is that the wrestling industry, as a whole, tends to push the larger than life characters. As a result, current and aspiring wrestlers are indirectly compensated for taking steroids.

One thing is for sure: This is a far more complex issue than simply stating "steroids are bad!"

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