What about the health risks? 

December, 24, 2007
12/24/07
9:50
PM ET
If you don't have time for all 12 of Joe Posnanski's Twelve Random Thoughts of Christmas, I still must insist that you read Joe's thoughts about Sweet Lou Whitaker (vs. Ryno Ryne Sandberg) and the Can't Miss Snowball TrickTM. And here's Posnanski on Buck O'Neil about the steroids:

It's funny, there have been several million words written in the past couple of weeks about steroids in baseball (and also HGH which is very different -- but let's use "steroids" here to describe the entire set of drugs). People are so hot-headed about the topic, you can't really talk to anybody. More and more, though, I think back to what Buck O'Neil used to say. He would shock people all the time. They expected him to be outraged about steroids and cheating, and he really was not. He used to say, "The only reason we didn't use steroids in my time is that we didn't have them." He said baseball players -- premier athletes in general -- look for that edge. It just in the nature of competitive athletes.

Then he said something else: He wondered why people didn't talk more about the health risks. If steroids really are dangerous enough to be illegal without prescriptions -- more dangerous than, say, cigarettes or alcohol or other over the counter legal drugs -- then he wished people would talk about THAT rather than talking about how many more home runs you could hit using steroids. He despised the phrase "performance enhancing drugs." He would have preferred something like "life-threatening drugs."
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