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Bonds' Hall of Fame Snub is Bigger Problem Than Steroids

Bud Selig's anti-steroid crusade is tarnishing baseball more than local hero Barry Bonds ever did.

In case you didn't know, the National Baseball Hall of Fame is a joke. It is a sham. A misnomer. A decorated soldier in Bud Selig's army deployed in the bogus Operation Baseball is Ethical strike on America. 

No one was elected to the Hall on Wednesday in the annual vote of players eligible for consideration, in large part because many of the candidates come from the Steroid Era — a roughly 15 to 20-year period starting in the late 1980s when players started using performance enhancing drugs to boost stats. 

The pervasive and completely flawed logic is that because a massive majority of these players used synthetics along on the way, they are blacklisted as cheaters and barred from entry into the Cooperstown baseball shrine. 

Members of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BWAA) make up the electorate in the Hall of Fame selection. It takes a 'Yes' vote from 75 percent of the writers to earn selection to the Hall. Wednesday's vote, in which indisputable all-time greats like Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Curt Schilling, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro (all accused steroid users) didn't even come close to 75 percent, simply shows how readily the members of the BWAA eat up the company line like their paychecks depend on it.

Let me explain: Bud Selig, commissioner of baseball, has led the crusade against steroids in his sport for about a decade, more or less since Bonds broke the single-season home run record in 2001. He has encouraged everything from federal trials to congressional witch hunts in his public battle with steroids. And the world has eaten it up, as evidenced by Wednesday's Hall of Fame voting results.

But this only began when it became convenient for Selig. For a solid decade, if not 15 years before Bonds hit 73, steroid use grew exponentially among Major League players, with full cognizance of training staffs, front offices and league executives. In that time, it was technically against the rules, but enforcement was scarce, some say nonexistent. 

Then in 1994, the baseball strike threatened to kill off the sport as a profession entirely in America. Fans stopped buying tickets. TV viewers flocked to anything but baseball. The sport needed a shot in the arm (or the butt) like never before and it got that jolt in the form of Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire. 

Thanks to steroids, McGwire and Sosa saved baseball. In 1998 they hit 70 and 66 home runs, respectively, both shattering the previous record of 61 held for decades by Roger Maris, turning America's attention back to its pastime. If it wasn't Clinton and Lewinsky headlining the news, it was Sosa and McGwire. That's how big of a deal it was. And it was no secret to anyone on the inside where these guys' massive biceps, inflated bat speed and jacked up power came from. But did Selig nail them as villains for injecting their way to the top? Of course not. He had a failing business to run.

In fact, he did quite the opposite. He made sure Sosa and McGwire were exalted as gods of the sport. Major League Baseball started using the slogan "Chicks dig the long ball," making millions in merchandise emblazoned with that war cry. Not only does the catchphrase champion steroid use, it suggests that guys need 28-inch biceps because, of course, that's what "chicks dig."

Fast forward to 2013 and there is no greater enemy in professional sports than steroids. Likely, that's the position that should have been taken all along. It would have promoted health and morality in sports. But morality is not reality, not in baseball, despite what Selig would like everyone to think.

The BWAA members helping cleanse the Hall of steroid users are only buying into Selig's propaganda aiming to erase the last 20 years of baseball from the history books. It's called the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Morals. Bad history is just as important as good history. Every player can't be poster boy Cal Ripken with shiny blues and a perfect crescent smile. 

The Hall should be a historical museum of all things important in baseball, and how can that exclude the men who helped save the sport 15 years ago?

I propose this: Let's start an Unbiased National Baseball Hall of Fame, where we don't pretend that history didn't happen just because we're not proud of it. The Black Sox will be included along with Bonds, Clemens and the rest of the Steroid Era greats. Pete Rose has been known to throw his money around. Maybe he'll help fund it. We can let him in, too.

What do you think? Should steroid users be allowed in the Hall of Fame? Tell us in the comments!

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Harold Edwards January 10, 2013 at 10:50 PM
Who cares what are gladiators do for the big business they play for.All pro athletes are not in the game for the fans. They have to produce for the owner,big business they play for.You sure can't blame them for doing any thing they can , to be the best they can be. You can say what you want about Bonds, or whoever but when they are doing what they do best .The money rolls in !
Unfiltered Steve Simoneau January 11, 2013 at 01:44 AM
For me, baseball is entertainment. Watching juiced athletes crush baseballs with a wooden bat was extremely entertaining. As far as steroids destroying the purity of the game: that happened a long time ago with gigantic salaries, bonuses, and sponsorships. Once baseball became a corporate business there pretty much wasn't anyting left to destroy. Let them all into the HOF, if not for being famous then for being infamous.
Paul Hubbard January 11, 2013 at 01:54 AM
If the front office of MLB did not know about it I would agree to keep them out, MLB knew what was going on and did nothing because causal fans dug the long ball and bought seats. As long as they're charging me $8 for a beer I'll turn a blind eye as well.
MICHAEL P WILSON "Independent Kid" January 11, 2013 at 02:01 AM
Why should a Baseball junkie be put in?
MICHAEL P WILSON "Independent Kid" January 11, 2013 at 02:04 AM
I have been told the NFL football, was better when the players were on cocaine.
Jan B January 11, 2013 at 07:34 AM
LOL you are joking, right?
Tom Ontis January 11, 2013 at 08:14 PM
As a long time Giants fan (firs game in '63,) I was disappointed, but not surprised that Bonds did not get into the Hall on his first try. Sheer numbers alone indicate that he was one of the game's elites. I saw him hit probably 8-10 homers in person and none of them were cheapies. Saw many more on TV. Selig seems to look the other way when one of his favored teams or players break rules. Bonds admitted he took something called the 'clear' and the 'cream. Bonds and the Goiants were never fans of the Giants. (I was watching a tape of the World Series Trphy presentation from 2010, not once did Selig shake the hand of one of the Giants' recipients.) Back to Bonds though: He will get into the Hall, I suspect sometime in the next 4-5 years. His name will always be tained by the allegations, something the Feds could not make stick after about 5 years of trying and a least three grand juries.
Cathy Gumina Odom January 17, 2013 at 08:08 PM
Well Tell Bud Selig I said to have Barry Bonda stripped of his records. No asterisks. Just like Livestrong. Or, give them back, and put them both in, like Babe Ruth 1930's. it's a conflict. What's the legal precident? Find the best Stanford or Harvard trained Sports Attorney. Or USF. Where else is good?

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