3 March 2015
Alex Rodriguez: What A-Rod Cost Him
When I was fourteen years old, I visited North Carolina State University with one of my friends, Ryan Stevens, who studied engineering at NC State. Unfortunately it was the time of exams and instead of being delighted with gardens and statues I was degusted by the sight of overflowed trashcans of Starbucks cups and Redbull cans. Ryan told me that when exams come the campus turns into a drug house. Students are pressured so much to do well on exams that they will do anything to pass. The idea of failing or not preforming well is too imperative. One might say that taking drugs to pass an exam is totally normal because every body does it. However one might say that it wasn’t even your fault for taking drugs because it was so competitive in the first place. Two conflicting perspectives surrounding this idea are found in Will Moller’s “Those who live in glass houses…” and Ian Crouch’s “A-Rod, the Astros, and Austerity.” Moller’s article discusses how judging people of fame for using performance enhancers is hypocritical and erroneous. Crouch’s article focuses on the praise that certain athletes receive while others are left to scraps. While both Moller and Crouch’s generally discuss how athletes are placed on pedestals they differ when it comes to the ideas of how they should be perceived.
Moller’s argument focuses on how athletes are placed on pedestals and are criticized for using performance enhancers while Crouch focuses on how specific athletes are overvalued and trump other players. While it can be inferred from both articles that some athletes are confounded, Moller discusses the topic through a very specific situation, and Crouch discusses the topic through a more general term. In his article, Moller says, “Back in February of 2000, I got to choose between breaking the rules and breaking my grades. I chose the rules, and it wasn't a tough decision. (3)” This phrase shows how Moller sees no difference between using performance-enhancing drugs as a student or athlete. He argues that because society praises athletes and puts the on pedestals we see that there is something very wrong with using steroids. In contrast, Crouch discusses how society overvalues these athletes and that we put them in this predicament in the first place. Crouch asks, “There’s another question to be considered: Should Major League Baseball be letting them do it”? His argument establishes that it is not Alex Rodriguez’s fault that we are paying him twenty-nine million dollars a year.
Crouch’s argument also differs from Moller’s in that it describes how Alex Rodriguez is placed on a pedestal and because of that he is well overpaid. Crouch’s article discusses ideas and points of view from different people, rather than just on himself or the Major League of Baseball. As a result, Crouch forms a more qualitative argument, while Moller specifically discusses his own perspective. This is seen at the beginning of Moller’s article as he begins to talk about his high school career.
The articles address the topic differently because the articles are coming from two different perspectives. Moller’s article is coming from his perspective as a student in boarding school, while Crouch’s article is coming from the perspective of The Houston Astros and Alex Rodriguez. Moller uses examples from his high school days to form his position in the argument. Introducing his argument, he states, “I imagine that the same discussion must have occurred in Alex Rodriguez's subconscious before he made the decision to start taking steroids” (2). This statement provides a solid foundation for his argument. In addition, Moller also states “What it really comes down to is that the reason Alex did steroids is you and me”. This statement provides an incentive that we are also at fault of Alex using steroids. If society didn’t view athletes as higher beings he wouldn’t have felt the pressure to