2005-04-13 / Editorials

Congress Wrong Group To Judge Drug Use

By Dr. Andrew Bernstein

Congress should be investigating our failed foreign policy, not wasting time investigating private steroid use in sports.

Threats against our very lives continue to mount—in Iran, North Korea and elsewhere—and our government does worse than nothing. Where is the investigation of our suicidal foreign policy—present and past, Republican and Democratic? The ensuing report would make our government's intelligence failures seem insignificant by comparison.

But instead, Congress investigates a private matter in which no one's rights are being violated. Adult citizens of a free country—so long as they do not initiate force or fraud against others—have the right to ingest whatever substance they choose.

Further, Major League Baseball and the National Football League are private organizations with the right to determine the rules under which they will associate with others. They alone have the right to determine whether they will ban players who take certain performance-enhancing substances, or ignore the practice.

Congress should kick the habit of grandstanding for votes and let individuals and private organizations, including professional sports leagues, exercise their freedom. Congress should get back to its long-neglected but only proper function: to protect the individual rights of every American citizen against foreign or domestic threat. Private drug use is not a threat to America.

Dr. Andrew Bernstein is a senior writer for the Ayn Rand Institute, Irvine, California.

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