AS I SEE IT

Bob Magee

The issue never seems to go away, does it? Drugs in professional wrestling. Iíve had to write before about the deaths of Brian Pillman and Louie Spicolli from drug use. Iíve had to watch workers handing out Percosets in the lobby of bars after shows. Iíve had to watch more than one person I know deal with the painful effects of drug use. At least this time as I write, someoneís trying in their own way to do something about it.

The following appeared on the NWA site http://www.ringwarriors.com/nwanews.htm. It was part of the ďNotes from the PresidentĒ column by NWA President Howard Brody. Iíll recap with excerpts:

"...This week I want to address an e-mail I received. No, it wasn't from an irate fan. And it wasn't from anybody who wanted to know how I really broke into the business. It wasn't even from some goofball telling me how much money I could make by sending out e-mails. Instead, it was a stomach turning, blood curdling sales pitch from a company in Hong Kong offering to sell me -- I hope you're sitting down -- Steroids.

Yes, Steroids. HGH, Deca, and a slew of other anabolic acronyms that read like a Russian eye chart. And every single one of them illegal from the word go.

Just when our business seemed to be cleaning up its act, along comes this crap to muddy it up again. Over the past few years we've seen too many talented people lose their lives to various forms of substance abuse. Whether it be painkillers, alcohol, or the long term debilitating effects of steroids. So, to paraphrase Owen Hart, "Enough is Enough! It's Time for a Change!....

...As the head of the NWA I want to take issue with those wrestlers who believe you have to be "big" to get a "push" in our industry. You don't. It's a fallacy. All you have to do is have heart, dedication, perseverence and above all, talent to succeed.

So do yourself a favor, if you're on steroids, put the needle in the garbage can, not in your ass. If you're popping pain killers, put the capsules in the toilet, not in your mouth. And if you think you can't get or keep a job in this industry unless youíre "big" or unless you're "in" by doing what the other "boys" are doing, then get the hell out of the business and do something else. It's not that important. Your health and your body are the most important things you have. Stop killing yourselves....

....So, as an industry leader, I say it's up to the people who control pro wrestling to police it. Therefore, in the face of this travesty, I would like to both encourage and invite all my fellow NWA members, the heads of the two major wrestling organizations (Vince McMahon and Eric Bischoff), the leader of the extreme movement (Paul Heyman), as well as those who control and operate pro wrestling home pages on the world wide web to create a consciousness of this problem, by getting behind me to support The Wrestling Coalition Against Substance Abuse. Simply by displaying this logo, you will be telling the world "Enough is Enough. It's Time for a Change. And the Time is Now."

Remember, this is not an NWA thing. It's not a WWF thing. It's not a WCW thing. And it's not an ECW thing. It's a Wrestling thing. It's an industry-wide problem that strikes both the large groups and the small independents struggling to survive. Let's put an end to this lunacy today. Thanks for listening . . . and remember, Being Clean Rules!"

PWBTS has put this banner on its front page already, and has urged a number of sites with which it has contact to do the same. HadesWrestling has done so. Perhaps banners on websites is a small thing. By itself, doing so will solve nothing. But if it makes ONE promoter, one worker, one fan think; itís done something very valuable.

If you have a website, and would like to support what Brody is proposing, take the time to get the banner from the NWA site at http://www.ringwarriors.com/nwanews.htm.

If you donít have a website, and just check out this column periodically... but know someone in or out of the business doing steroids, someone doing painkillers, talk to them. Explain to these people what they mean to you, and what these drugs can do to them.

Sound preachy? Perhaps it is. But better to be preachy, than watch a friend or co-worker die. That could be the price that you pay for silence.

Until next time...

If you have comments or questions, I can be reached by e-mail at magee@uscom.com.