Wrong ruling on drug tests

Do random drug and alcohol tests really infringe an athletes rights?

  • Monday, June 2, 2008 4:03pm
  • Sports

Do random drug and alcohol tests really infringe an athletes rights?

Strike another one down for lack of common sense.

Last week, the Washington State Supreme Court ruled that high schools in our state cannot randomly drug test student athletes.

Other states allow this, but our court ruled that the tests would violate the state constitution.

The case stems from a 1999 situation involving students from the Wahkiakum School District in Southwest Washington. Those athletes sued the school district, upset that they were requiring students to submit to the tests to participate in sports.

Let’s first get facts straight that we can all agree on. Consuming alcohol under the age of 21 in Washington state is against the law. Using illicit drugs in Washington state is against the law.

Now that we agree on what’s illegal, we can all hopefully agree that drug and alcohol abuse is a problem with some young people in our state.

So why all the bellyaching?

I don’t believe passing a drug and alcohol test should be a condition required of students to participate in sports, but I have no problem with random tests during the season. Lest we forget, passing a drug test is often a requirement of employment. Why should sports be any different?

I just don’t see the negatives.

Most high schools have some sort of “Athletic Honor Code” that students are expected to abide by. These often state the obvious – obey the law, stay away from drugs and alcohol. It’s effectiveness is in the writing.

I see it as just another reason for kids to avoid the bad stuff. I’ve heard than more than one instance in our community of kids getting kicked off teams after indiscretions. Heck, I’ve been a part of more than one team where that’s happened.

Here’s the thing about kids; they can hide stuff. Crazy, I know. Think back to when you were growing up – surely you did things your parents never found out about. With a random test, kids who may have drug or alcohol abuse problems can get the help they need.

I’ve always thought sports to be a wonderful outlet for kids, a way to do something positive. If a random test helps a kid stay on the straight and narrow, I’m all for it.

Besides, what have we got to lose? Keeping kids out of trouble? Helping those that might need it?

Maybe we should give the State Supreme Court a drug test.

More in Sports

‘Over the Top’ is one of the most underrated sports movies of all time

There is just something about 1980s sports movies that has me hook,… Continue reading

Newport swim team remains undefeated

Sports Roundup BOYS SWIMMING Newport remains undefeated in the pool The Newport… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Scott Miller
                                Sammamish Totems senior Tao McClinton, center, makes a move up the field after making a catch against the Ingraham Rams on Sept. 29. McClinton will continue his football career at Sacramento State University.
McClinton attains a childhood dream on gridiron

Ever since Sammamish Totems senior football player Tao McClinton set foot on… Continue reading

Totems girls basketball team nearly completes comeback against Islanders

The Sammamish Totems girls basketball team dominated the fourth quarter against Mercer… Continue reading

Bellevue Christian boys hoops team captures 10th victory

SPORTS ROUNDUP BOYS BASKETBALL Bellevue Christian collects 10th victory of the 2017-18… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Don Borin/Stop Action Photography
                                Bellevue senior guard Annika Prins, who scored a game-high 21 points, drives to the basket while being guarded by a Mercer Island player on Jan. 3 at Bellevue High School.
Wolverines girls basketball team dominates Mercer Island in rivalry matchup

Stingy defense propelled the Bellevue Wolverines girls basketball team to a convincing… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Don Borin/Stop Action Photography
                                Bellevue junior guard Jalen Love drives to the hoop against the Mercer Island Islanders. Love, who scored 15 points in the game, hit a crucial three-pointer with 5.6 seconds left in regulation.
Love seals Bellevue victory with clutch three-pointer

It wasn’t the way Bellevue Wolverines boys basketball head coach Chris O’Connor… Continue reading

Wolverines girls basketball team is on a winning streak

GIRLS BASKETBALL Wolverines win fourth straight contest The Bellevue Wolverines cruised to… Continue reading

Shaun Scott/staff photo
                                Bellevue Bulldogs sophomore guard Jaden Vollmen, who graduated from Puyallup High School in 2016, is one of the leaders of a squad that has compiled an overall record of 9-3 thus far during the 2017-18 season.
Vollmen is a steadying influence on the floor for the Bulldogs

Bellevue Bulldogs sophomore basketball player Jaden Vollmen is the epitome of an… Continue reading

Wolverines girls basketball team dominates Kangaroos

SPORTS ROUNDUP GIRLS BASKETBALL Wolverines dominate Kangaroos The Bellevue Wolverines cruised to… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Rick Edelman/Rick Edelman Photography
                                Newport Knights 2013 graduate Isaac Dotson had seven tackles (three solo tackles) for the Washington State Cougars football team against the University of Washington Huskies in the Apple Cup on Nov. 26. The Huskies defeated the Cougars 41-14. Dotson (right), chased Huskies running back Myles Gaskin, left, in the above picture.
Dotson unveils solid performance in Apple Cup

Newport Knights 2013 graduate Isaac Dotson had seven tackles (three solo tackles)… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Rick Edelman/Rick Edelman Photography
                                University of Washington Huskies tight end Drew Sample (No. 88) had one catch for five yards in the Apple Cup on Nov. 26 at Husky Stadium in Seattle. The Huskies defeated the Washington State Cougars 41-14. Sample is a 2014 graduate of Newport High School in Factoria.
Newport 2014 grad part of victorious Huskies squad in Apple Cup

University of Washington Huskies tight end Drew Sample (No. 88) had one… Continue reading