Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Rodriguez and Baseball: 'No Accountability'; 'Disgraceful' News Conference, Says Ex-White House Drug Spokesman Robert Weiner

/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "Alex Rodriguez and Major League Baseball are showing no accountability for A-Rod's now-admitted drug abuse," asserts former White House Drug Policy spokesman Robert Weiner, who worked on the creation of both WADA and USADA, the World and U.S. Anti-Doping Agencies.

Weiner, who was White House Drug Policy spokesman 1995-2001 and coordinated White House anti-drug media at the Sydney Olympics and WADA media at the Salt Lake Games, added, "In any Olympic sport, Rodriguez and the other 103 major league baseball players now known to test positive (of 600 tested) would be banned for at least two years starting now. There is rightly no tolerance for cheating -- which A-Rod pitifully would not even admit at his news conference that he had done. Why else except to cheat would he allow himself to be injected with steroids twice a month for three years?"

Weiner stated, "Rodriguez now apologizes to his teammates, youth, and parents, but what is the real message? He gets away with it. He looks forward to playing this season. He looks forward to the rest of his career. He refuses to say his records should be eliminated -- which the Olympics would also do.

"Baseball's drug policy is a sham. Unless Baseball bans Rodriguez for a significant amount of playing time, the real message to kids is... you can get away with it.

"When Barry Bonds still is getting away with dodging despite his admission of at least amphetamines and likely use of other banned substances, and A-Rod is getting away with whining without real consequence, it's essentially the public and fans be damned -- all that counts is tickets, TV viewers, and advertising revenue.

"Even for drugs that are clearly not performance-enhancing, like marijuana, Olympic sports enforce consequences of use: Michael Phelps was banned three months for his marijuana abuse. For performance-enhancing drug cheating, youth, parents, coaches, and trainers must understand that there is, as USA Track & Field's sports-leading policies provide, 'Zero Tolerance,'" concluded Weiner, a devoted masters track runner.

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