Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Sumo Wrestlers Inhaled

A couple of Russian sumo wrestlers were kicked out of the sport, for life, yesterday in Tokyo. Their crime? Not steroids, not banned performance enhancing substances. They smoke dope. Yes, they inhaled and it showed up on the drug test.

The two, brothers, were tested for marijuana use during the first drug testing since another Russian wrestler was arrested last month for marijuana possession.

Can you imagine what an attack of the munchies must look like with these guys?

What is being called a scandal now is shaking up the sumo wrestling world. With the sport's beginnings in a religious ritual, a high standard of moral conduct is expected of its participants. In Japan, marijuana possession is a serious crime. This has been front page news.

An emergency meeting was called Monday and the punishment - the lifetime ban from the sport - was announced.

The testing began after last month's arrest of the first Russian. Marijuana was found in his wallet, sending up a red flag. The sumo wrestling association conducted drug tests on all 69 of its top division wrestlers and that is when the two brothers tested positive. A second test was done and the results were announced Friday. It was said the two "consumed the drug in amounts far beyond what could be inhaled from secondhand smoke, sumo association spokesman Yuichi Ida said." So, no using the excuse they were just at a party.

Supporting the legalization of medical marijuana is a worthy cause. However, it doesn't appear even that would help these sumo wrestlers now.

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