Ethical Issues in Sports
Sport management includes a variety of levels of sport, professional sport, collegiate sport, high school sport, and recreational sport. These levels of sport all acquire the same issues; ethical issues. Ethical issues are moral principles, the rights and wrongs of the actions that people display every day. These issues are displayed tremendously in sport. There are many ethical issues involving sport from fair play in recreational leagues to steroids in professional leagues and everything in between. Sport managers face many challenges in their line of work, one of the biggest being ethical issues. The sport managers’ for professional sports faces some of the biggest ethical issues involving performance-enhancing drugs. Professional players are seen as gods to many of their fans especially the children dreaming to be exactly like them when they grow up. There are many players from almost all major leagues who use performance-enhancing drugs. One of the latest scandals involved the seven time winner cyclist of the Tour de France, Lance Armstrong. Armstrong was one of the greatest cyclists of all time even after fighting his battle of cancer. People looked up to him, his strength and fight to push through every barrier in his way. “On October 22 the International Cycling Union stripped Mr. Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles and banned him from the sport.” (America). Lance Armstrong was accused of using performance-enhancing drugs and also paid other cyclists such as Stephen Swart to throw races which he then won. Armstrong thought it was okay because everyone else does it. “Among his dwindling number of supporters, the most common defense of Mr. Armstrong’s actions is “everybody does it.” Indeed, Mr. Armstrong and his fellow conspirators that very argument to rope into the plot younger racers, some of whom had thirsted for the excitement of international competitive cycling all their lives. The familiar syllogism ran: All the top racers use drugs; you wish to race the top racers; therefore, you should use drugs too. If “everyone” is breaking the rules, the rules become meaningless.” (America). If the top racers in the world are all using drugs the up and coming racers are going to be influenced into using them. Where does it end though? The children who dream of being top racers are looking up to these racers who are using drugs to be the best. They want to be the best too, it only seems logical to use and do the same as the best in the world. It sets an awful example to kids and up and coming athletes. Armstrong’s sponsors dropped him because this breaks ethical codes of conduct. No one wants to be associated with a person who has to use drugs to win. The companies Armstrong was associated with are going to be affected through Armstrong’s bad decisions. Costumers are not going to buy anything that has to do with Lance Armstrong. Performance-enhancing drugs are an immense facet that sport managers have to deal with on a daily basis. When people think of ethics, they automatically think about what is morally right and wrong. Throwing a game may benefit some people and may benefit the way the team is placed in a tournament but also defeats the purpose of the game; which is wrong in many eyes. This affects sport managers, the team, the league, the sport itself, and most importantly the fans that support and love their team. Fans are the only reason anybody in the professional sport industry get paid. It’s the fans who pay for the tickets, purchase the clothes and anything with their teams brand and in essence it is the fans that fund the team. After a team throws a game, they lose the support of many fans because they are disappointed and mislead. Fans want to see their team win every game or give a hundred percent effort because that is what is ethical. Crazed sport fans will go to every game and make sure they are wearing their lucky shirt that has not been washed since the...
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