03/28/2008 02:45 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Massive Failure Of Journalists Allowed Steroid Culture To Fester

Maybe I was just paying more attention than others as an age-group swimmer in California at the time, but I can recall being wowed by the guts U.S. swimmer Shirley Babashoff showed when she dared to speak out at the 1976 Summer Olympics about the mannish East German women who turned that competition into a mockery. I had no idea what was up with the East Germans, but I respected Babashoff's nerve. Many, however, wished she had kept her mouth shut. She was dubbed "Surly Shirley" in the press for making cracks about the deep voices of the East German women. An East Berlin swim coach was even brazen enough to airily dismiss such criticism by observing - in an accent that probably sounded a lot like the Rainier Wolfcastle character on "The Simpsons" - "We have come to swim, not to sing."

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