Eastchester Letter: The Power Of Role Models

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EASTCHESTER, N.Y. -- The Eastchester Daily Voice accepts signed letters to the editor. Send letters to eastchester@dailyvoice.com.

The Power of Role models:

Your son’s favorite baseball team is the Yankees, his favorite baseball player on the Yankee team and the entire baseball world, and probably his role model is Alex Rodriguez. He wears the Yankee jersey number 13, he chooses to buy Alex Rodriguez’ collection of Nike cleats and other baseball gear. 

To you as a parent who may not have had a sports role model, these things seem crazy, but as an athlete, who grew up playing tennis and watching my favorite athlete play professional tennis, I can relate. I wanted to play tennis like Andre Agassi and I tried to do everything he did that I watched on television. Sports role models have a tremendous and intense influence on up and coming athletes.

That morning as you prepare to take your son to his baseball game, you try to browse quickly at the sports page of your local newspaper; The EastChester Daily Voice.

On the page, the first thing you see is a photo of Rodriguez with a title, “A-Rod admits to using Performance Enhancing Drugs (PED’s) while playing for the Texas Rangers and the Yankees” (ESPN). 

While we may think that PED’s affect only the user, it is important to consider the stake holders involved, particularly young people, up and coming athletes. 

Rodriguez started using PED’s a teen in high school, his continuous use of PED’s won him big contracts with the Texas Rangers and the New York Yankees; $252 and $275 million for 10 year contracts, respectively.

The effects of performance- enhancing drugs are enormous on young, up and coming athletes, like that child of yours who adores baseball and idolizes Rodriguez.

How does this matter to us? Why should we care when, these athletes clearly live their lives away from our young, up and coming athletes? 

Rodriguez has no direct physical connection with your baseball playing child, but up and coming athletes watch games of their favorite teams and players on television; they go to watch their matches and they read about them on the newspapers, internet and they friend and follow them on social media they know everything going on with these athletes and their professional sports life.

The effects of PED’s on young, up and coming athletes condone certain types of drug use.

These drugs also make young, up and coming athletes accept the notion that only outcome matters, but not how you get there. Is this how we want to raise our young athletes at Lake Isle Country Club?

Using PED’s is cheating, and young may change to live the lives of their role models, they may not know that certain behaviors of their role models are detrimental to their future success.

We should be open and educate our young athletes about the dangers and the effects of PED’s so that our community maintains the core values it has had for a  longtime.

We as a sports community here at Lake Isle should also urge our representatives to raise this alarming issue in congress so that stiffer and more severe punishment be rendered to those found guilty of using PED’s in professional sports.

PED’s are immoral and unhealthy. Together we can get rid of PED’s from poisoning the minds of our kids and keeping our community healthy.

Tolbert Oring

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