In case you haven't heard, San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds is the new all-time home run leader. Everyone from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to President George W. Bush has congratulated Bonds on his feat. Yet, he's not universally heralded for his feat.
Maybe it's because it's not clear he's earned the feat.
For the past few years, it's been rumored that Bonds has been using steroids, and there are photographs that show differences in Bonds's body and head size, both of which are said to be indicators of steroid use. And Bonds hasn't exactly put the rumors to bed with excuses flimsier than a wet toilet paper nightie.
But does it really matter? After the 90s, we've grown to accept the less than perfect as though it were perfection, all so we don't make people feel bad. We're even willing to accept cheating because it makes us feel better about the times when we've failed.
I'm not perfect, but I have no problem saying that Barry Bonds doesn't deserve the home run title. Until he is exonerated, I will believe he used steroids to win that historic title. There is just too much to overlook to think that he's clean at this stage. Some people have defended him saying that steroids don't improve hand-eye coordination, which is essential to hitting. That's as may be, but when you're dealing with an older man as Bonds is, that hand-eye coordination starts to slip a bit. And when you're trying to hit home runs, you need power to do it. Hand-eye coordination alone doesn't do it.
Bud Selig isn't my favorite guy in the world, but I think he had the best take on the Bonds situation. When Bonds hit the record-breaking home run, he looked confused for a time and then bored. No words could have been more pithy, dear readers.