Jackie Speier Bills Criticized

Editor in Chief Jim Schmaltz of Physical Magazine offers his take on the efforts of California state senator Jakie Speier to curb teen steroid abuse without properly differentiating steroids from dietary supplements:

Miss Informed

BY Jim Schmaltz, Editor in Chief, Physical Magazine

Meet Jackie Speier. Smart woman. Courageous, too. She survived multiple gun-shot wounds as an aid to California Representative Leo Ryan in 1978. The two were part of a delegation to Guyana that was ambushed by cult mastermind Jim Jones’s fanatical followers. Ryan died, and hours later, so did Jones and hundreds of his flock in a mass suicide.

Ms. Speier returned to California and has served honorably in elected office for decades. Now a California state senator, this tenacious and admirable legislator has sadly undergone a credibility bypass in recent months. Speier was trotted out as part of a cavalcade of uninformed commentators spouting nonsense on the running joke known as ESPN�s Sports Center: The Steroids Controversy. On the program, Speier condemned Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for vetoing her legislation on teen “juicing.” The bill proposes many well-intentioned efforts to curb teen steroid use, but outrageously lumps in over-the-counter sports supplements with illegal drugs.

As both her ESPN comments and steroids bill prove, Sen. Speier knows as much about sports nutrition as Paris Hilton does about quantum mechanics. Too bad that Speier is determined to put that vast lack of knowledge into law by reintroducing her legislation.

Speier is far from alone on the list of those tragically misinformed on sports nutrition. Sports columnists, mainstream reporters and ESPN talking heads routinely repeat negative innuendo regarding over-the-counter supplements, casually blurring the line between legal and illegal. It’s time they learned the truth about these safe and effective substances.

So, we’re doing something about it. We’re adding Sen. Speier and ESPN’s main offices to the Physical mailing list. This will give them a fighting chance in determining that OTC products have nothing to do with anabolic steroids.

Enjoy Physical on us. Perhaps you’ll see what a positive difference nutritional supplements make in improving the quality of life for millions.

[(C) 2005, Jim Schmaltz.  Reprinted with permission of Physical magazine]