I will get this out of the way: Barry Bonds is not in my top ten list of people I’d like to have a beer with. He seems to have a huge chip on his shoulder that would make friendly conversation near impossible.
That being said, I must say “Congratulations, Mr. Bonds”.
Now, the consensus is that Barry cheated by using steriods to acheive this record. In fact, it is accepted these days as orthodoxy. I can say that from what I’ve seen, the accusation is probably true.
But this is America. When it is proved that Barry Bonds cheated, that he took illegal performance-enhancing substances, then I will withdraw my congratulations and say his name no more. But I’ve seen too many times when America got caught up in the mood of the moment, and railroaded someone that “everyone knew was guilty”. I refuse to get caught up in that, regardless of my personal instincts.
Barry Bonds now holds the most prestigious record in sports. Henry Aaron congratulated him. Hank Aaron is a hero of mine. I will follow suit. Let’s let Barry have his moment.
But, I will keep that asterisk close by at all times in case it’s needed.