Sunday, March 06, 2005

I'm rather entertained by major league baseball players 'deciding' whether to testify before Congress.

Some good quotes:

Schilling: "It depends on what it's for."
Giambi: "I have no idea what they're trying to do. I'm just trying to play baseball."
Palmeiro: "March 17 is my wife's birthday. That should tell you right there what my answer is."
Sosa: "I don't know about that. I'll have to call my agent."

Uhhhh, guys. This isn't the local sportswriter. Their entire lives they've been accustomed to talking when they want, and not talking when they don't want to. They can tell half-truths, and evade or ignore the question whenever they want to. But this game is not being played on their terms. Sportswriters don't have the power of the subpoena.

You can't just "decide" whether to testify if Congress wants you. If they're stupid enough not to attend, I fully expect them to receive subpoenas, and then they won't have any choice. Steroids are a great issue for members of Congress. It's high visibility, so they'll get their names in the press. There is no lobby out there fighting for steroids, so they're not going to antagonize anybody. It's bipartisan. It plays great in the heartland. Everybody understands it. There are plenty of opportunities for practiced one-liners that might get picked up in USA Today. And the baseball players aren't going to do themselves any favors by hemming and hawing. Personally, this is the rare time that I think Congress is on the right track. Make those guys raise their right hands and get the truth out there!

What they should do, of course, it just come clean. Apologize, maybe tear up a little, and swear a solemn oath to the American People that they'll never do it again. Perhaps mention The Lord, and how much He means to them (connection to steroids: uncertain, but the American people love mentions of The Lord). This story would be old news quickly. But if they fight it, it's just going to drag on and on. There will be editorials in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. Talking heads will cover the whole thing on Court TV. There will be Commissions, and much discussion about Baseball History and the Sacred nature of the game. And there will be discussion of The Children.

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