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No justice

August 15, 2009

Kurt Streeter's idea of restorative justice in baseball [Aug. 9] is nothing short of asinine. Most of us agree that performance-enhancing drugs should be eliminated in sports. One can argue that the penalties are not severe enough. The truth is, fame and fortune were the motive for taking drugs, and the punishment taxes both fame and fortune. Restorative justice fails to provide any further deterrent and would reduce the financial penalty as Streeter proposes it. Imagine if all unions advocated this reform for failed drug tests.

Admittedly, the owners, the union, the commissioner and the fans have been willing enablers. But the moral outrage Streeter speaks of is unfounded. Professional sports exist only as entertainment. It's their product, their players and their stadiums. It's our choice whether or not to give them money. I suggest to either change the channel or enroll in a "restorative reality" program.

Tony Stout

Ontario

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I read Kurt Streeter's unintentionally hilarious column suggesting baseball adopt a Truth and Reconciliation Commission in dealing with steroid abusers. Streeter, who envisions the likes of Manny Ramirez pouring his heart out to family members, ticket holders and, get this, lifetime minor leaguers, must have his head up where the sun don't shine.

If Streeter sincerely wants to stop steroid abuse in baseball, I have a can't-miss solution: strap Manny in a chair and force him to read T.J. Simers, Bill Plaschke and, of course, Streeter's latest hand-wringing column. I guarantee a shaken Manny would confess his sins and rival Mother Teresa for goodness and purity for the rest of his career.

Skip Usen

Santa Monica

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