Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Illegal Steroids

Anabolic steroids are the steroids of particular interest that receive all of the negative attention in the media and on the television. They are the illegal steroids in the United States and a few other nations in the world, while other types of steroids are not illegal at all in most Western countries. The legality of anabolic steroids varies quite a bit, with relatively few countries imposing very strict control on them while in the vast majority of countries they are not illegal. In the United States, illegal steroids are placed under the Schedule III category of controlled substances under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), which was originally imposed via the Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 1990. This makes the posession, use, distribution, manufacture, buying, and selling of illegal steroids a felony with criminal punishments. Illegal steroids in the UK are classified as Class C controlled drugs by way of the Misuse of Drugs Act, which was enstated on November 1st, 1996. In the UK, it is not illegal to possess or use anabolic steroids, but it is illegal to manufacture, supply, sell, or import licensed approval. In Canada, almost the exact same is true where illegal steroids are permitted for personal possession and use, but the sale, distribution, importation, and manufacture is illegal. This is made possible by virtue of the fact that anabolic steroids in Canada are classified as Schedule IV substances under the CDSA (Controlled Drugs and Substances Act) of Canada, whereby any items classified under Schedule IV are permitted for personal use and possession, but not for the reasons previously stated.

The rest of the world expresses very few or no laws in regards to anabolic steroids. Only a very small handful of countries in the world have adopted laws towards illegal steroids that are as draconian as the United States, with perhaps a handful in Western Europe. This also includes Australia, Argentina, Brazil, and Portugal, where illegal steroids hold generally the same status as in the United States (any and all forms of possession outside of prescription use is deemed criminal). Otherwise, those steroids that are typically deemed ‘illegal steroids’ in the United States or other similar Western nations, are not illegal in the rest of the world. An example of a couple of countries where anabolic steroids are freely and legally available without a prescription are Mexico and Thailand, which are common locations whereby individuals will purchase and consume anabolic steroids, and are also known as popular hubs for the black market illegal steroid trade.

What Makes Illegal Steroids Illegal?

The concept of anabolic steroids being illegal is a very relative one, and it is very relative to the United States, which is the very first nation that has expounded the idea that anabolic steroid use is necessarily a bad thing, and subsequently pressured other nations into siding with its anti-steroid sentiment. The reason for anabolic steroids obtaining the legal status that it has in the United States (and the West in general) is an extremely deep and rich subject that could be debated for ages on end. Illegal steroids have been deemed as such for many difference reasons, ranging from the claims that they provide an unfair advantage in professional sports to the supposed claims concerning the negative health effects. Some might claim that the justifications for the legal status of anabolic steroids in the United States are absent and void of any validity, while there are staunch supporters that the public must be protected from the abuse of these drugs. Whatever the case may be, it is very evident that the moral justifications for the legal status of anabolic steroids are very grey ones. For example, a close look at the records of the discussions and debates on the hearing floors of the Congressional hearings on anabolic steroids in 1990 will reveal the fact that the overwhelming majority of the pages of transcripts are filled with discussion concerning their ability to enhance athletic performance. This comes as quite a surprise considering the public is constantly told by the government and the media that the sole reason for the criminalization of anabolic steroids is to control the health risks associated with their use. 

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