The New York Times recently featured an article entitled Steroids in Sports Oct 11, 2012. In this article the times aims to convince their readers that steroid use is bad if not worse then ever before. Drug suspension in the sport kept descending¦ but now they are climbing again. In doing so they capture the audiences attention by showing the effects of steroids misuse and the huge consequences that come with abusing steroids are some techniques that they use to skillfully create a strong, convincing article.
The Times begins the article reflecting on the abuse of steroids in sports, describing, much of the focus of steroid misuse has been with Major League Baseball and cycling yet the Olympics is under scrutiny as well. The Times uses logos to back up their statement saying, In the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, 11 athletes were barred for illegal drug use. The technique has immediately established the article as informal and personal. It is a great way to capture and maintain the readers interest.
The Times uses this particular technique as a way to reach out and relate to the audience. For instance, the second paragraph informs the reader about the harmful effects that steroids can have on you. WebMD touches upon the same subject and supplies side effect after side effect some included: heart attacks, mood swings, decrease sperm count, and many others. Information relating to possible health issues opens the readers doors and often times intrigues one to really listen whole heartedly.
The next paragraph states, ¦ most sports have banned steroid use¦ underground suppliers¦ stayed a step ahead of even the most stringent testing programs. The Times strategically uses pathos to inform the audience that the misuse of steroids has severe consequences and is unethical. Imhoff & Associates, PC website shows that one can face up to five years in prison under federal law for the possession of steroids.
About a third of the way through the article, The Times make a transition from contrast to comparison. They begin focusing on the idea that all steroid instances arent bad. Not all revelations of steroid use are accompanied by outrage. The Times use contrast to illustrate that not all cases of steroid use turn to an outrage. Then in comparison they say, some of baseballs most cherished storylines have been tainted by performance enhancing drugs¦ In 2005, Jose Canesco blew the lid off Major League Baseballs steroid scandal with his best seller Juiced. He made a bold statement stating, The challenge is not to find a top player who has used steroids. The challenge is to find a top player who hasnt. (Canseco)
The times continue the article by showing the history of steroids and how nothing has been done. Baseball commissioner Fay Vincent 89-92 didnt crack down on steroid use until his last year on the job. A new commissioner stepped in, Bud Selig he downplayed steroid use as well for the entire 90s. Selig even said in 95, if baseball has a problem, I must say candidly that we were not aware of it. The Times uses ethos as a prime example showing that baseball commissioners and the baseball union have known about the problem for years yet nothing has been done about the problem.
After quite a few years later the commissioner and the union finally agreed on a testing policy. The Times emphasis on finally sarcastically pokes fun at how long it took to take action in it all. The use of vocabulary that the article uses helps the audience get the underlying message by keeping it simple. The most recent press release about drug testing was in 2005 on MLB.com they announced that there would be unannounced testing and a minimum of one test per year per player.
The Times informs the audience about the penalties for being caught in Major League Baseball in a bit of a mockery tone, The penalty for first offense was treatment, and for five violations, a one-year suspension. The article continues to talk about the first season results and how they were suppose to remain anonymous but didnt, and many fan favorites were on whats known as the list. Strategically using pathos, kids are seeing these role models using and abusing steroids so why cant they? They wont go anywhere unless they use them. Fox news came out with a report A dangerous trend: Kids and teens using steroids within that article Dr. Manny Alvarez states, A new study shows that about five percent of middle and high school students have used anabolic steroids to put on muscle¦
However all steroids arent bad, in fact steroids are used all the time to help with inflammatory disease, skin problems, eye infections, and many more as stated by healthlevelup.com. Its just a matter of how many you take that can have harmful effects on you.
The Times turns its focus on particular instances of misuse of steroids through well-known baseball players. Barry Bonds beat the all-time home run record but stated in the article Bonds was indicted on federal perjury¦grand jury testimony in a steroids case. He was convicted in 2011. The New York Times uses Roger Clemens case as well to show that our most memorable moments in baseball history were abusing steroids. It also posed as a major problem in knowing what to do with the hall of fame.
The LA Times touched on the subject saying, No players were elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame this year in a polarizing vote that reopened the wounds of the steroid era. The conflict poses, records have been broke and pushed to the limit so how does a clean player compete with it? The Times use ethos to call to action the public in helping figure out what to do.
However, CBSsports.com interviewed Barry Bonds and the reporter Dayn Perry believes that things should play out differently and Bonds should be in the Hall of Fame. He made a statement saying, Make even extreme deductions for what he may or may not have done during his playing days, and he still merits induction.
The article has a subtitle called, The Steroid Era Never Really Stopped, a bold statement such as this maintains the audiences attention and brings questions about why nothing has been done. The Times say that testing isnt enough to stop the misuse of steroids something else must be done. Posing as another effective use of pathos that The Times is trying to get across.
Although others would disagree, The Times makes a transition from contrast to comparison. They begin focusing on the evidence that in 2010 and 2011 the amount of athletes that were suspended were not near as many as years prior. In 2010¦ only two major leaguers were suspended¦and only two in 2011. But bouncing back in 2012, five more athletes were caught and suspended. Dr. Robert Hinkley responded to the results and he was astonished. He said, there must be some sort of drug masking going on because there is no way thats possible. Responding to the amount of athletes suspended.
The Times move forward and jump right into the most recent incident and that involving seven-time Tour de France winner, Lance Armstrong. In an interview exclusively with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong came forward and openly admitted to using steroids. Logos being used, The Times informs the reader of the consequences that Armstrong had to face, He has been stripped of his seven Tour titles¦ and all other titles, awards and money he won from August 1998 forward.
More important than the functions of the techniques The Times use is how they use them together. For example, had they bluntly stated earlier in the article that steroids are unethical without preceding it with contrast, a quite different effect would have been created. Some people may have thought it to be judgmental and a bold statement with no lead up to it. This approach would certainly have prevented the article from being convincing. It is obvious that The Times purposely used the techniques in a planned way. This allowed them to create a specifically designed article that was beneficial in helping them present their ideas.
Alvarez, Manny. A dangerous trend: Kids and teens using steroids . . N.p., 19 Nov 2012. Web. 27 Jan 2013.
Hits, and How Baseball Got Big. New York City: Regan Books, 2005. 290. Print. DeNoon, Daniel. Why Steroids Are Bad for You. WebMD. WebMD, 16 Mar 2005. Web. 27 Jan 2013.
Imhoff, . Anabolic Steroid Charges. Imhoff & Associates, PC Criminal Defense Attorneys. N.p.. Web. 27 Jan 2013.