When the news first broke that Ryan Braun used steroids and would be punished with a suspension I found myself saying, "Good, he deserves to be punished." I had a slightly lowered opinion of Braun but my view on him wasn't in the gutter. He still had passed many other tests and has had a very successful career which has presumably been mostly without the assistance of steroids.
However, when I got news that Braun was "innocent" my opinion of him plummeted. In the days and weeks that followed my opinion of the guy gets lower and lower. I find myself asking "why do I think less of a guy who 'beat' the allegations against him." I think I finally understand why after all these weeks I dislike Braun more and more with each passing day. It's because people inherently like to see justice. We walk through our daily lives with the Meritocratic view of life that "if you do good you will be rewarded and if you do bad you will be punished." There is a certain serenity in punishment, a certain balance to life that it provides.
In the case of Braun there will be no punishment. He won on a technicality, a glitch in the procedural guidelines that underscore the testing policy in Maor League Baseball. The fact that a guy used steroids, won an MVP, and got away scott free. Frankly, it pisses me off. It pisses me off that a guy cheated and will suffer no penalty for his actions. What I guess pisses me off even more is the way Braun approaches this. Namely, "with the idea that a technicality is a victory for him." He seems to believe that because proper procedure wasn't used that means he's vindicated on his use of steroids. We all know he did it. Yet, he threw the drug tester under the bus for not using the "proper" method. Yet he calls into question the integrity of the inspector despite not a single piece of evidence of impropriety by the inspector. To me, that's pure scum. That's a guy that broke the rules and is willing to hurt innocent people to protect himself.
Here's what needs to happen for me to forgive him. Braun needs to publicly apologize to the inspector. Braun needs to openly admit that he did not vindicate himself but instead won on a technicality. Braun needs to stop blaming others, and take responsibility for his actions. At that point I may view him in a better light, until then he's.....well he's every eplitive imaginable.
I know this is a post that is "past due" but it's been bothering me for a while now, and I had to vent.