Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Russia: Olympic Curling Doping Scandal (2018)


Krushelnitckii participating in mixed doubles curling event before being 
stripped of the bronze medal for doping
During the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the Russian Olympic team has been in the spotlight for alleged doping. Alexander Krushelnitckii, a member of the Olympic Athletes from Russia’s (OAR) curling team was stripped of a bronze medal that he won in the mixed doubles curling event with his wife, Anastasia Bryzgalova after failing a drug test because of performance enhancing drugs. However, because Krushelnitckii is a Russian athlete, it complicated things. Russia had previously run a state sponsored doping ring during the Sochi Olympics, the International Olympic Committee had considered removing Russia from the Olympics in 2018. During the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the country of Russia is technically not taking part.
The Russian team has been forced to go through rigorous vetting and wear uniforms without their countries flag and are unable to play their national anthem. The Russian team is called Olympic Athletes from Russia, or OAR, that competes under the Olympic flag rather than the Russian flag. If
Russian Athletes playing for Olympic Athletes from Russia team because the country 
of Russia was banned from the 2018 Olympic in Pyeongchang
the OAR curling team is stripped of its medal, Norway will be in line for the bronze. Krushelnitckii, admitted to breaking the anti-doping rules during the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, for taking meldonium, a performance enhancing drug, and was disqualified. Meldonium has been banned in the Olympics since 2016 and is the same drug that tennis player Maria Sharapova was caught using.


There are many stake holders in this case. The most important is Krushelnitckii’s teammates. His teammates trust him to play by the rules in all events. Because he did not follow the rules by taking performance enhancing drugs, he put his team is at risk of losing their bronze medal in the mixed doubles curling event. After being accused of taking performance enhancing drugs members of the Russian team were unable to concentrate on their game because of the possibility of losing their medals for the misconduct of one athlete. The next stakeholder involved in this case is the opposing teams, especially Norway who is in line for the bronze behind Russia. The opposing teams worked hard to play against each other only to lose to someone who broke the rules. 


Meldonium: Performance enhancing drug used by Krushelnitckii 
during the 2018 Olympics
Friedman’s theory of individualism states, “The only goal of business is to profit, so the obligation that the business person has is to maximize profit for the shareholders within the constraints of the law” An Individualist would examine this case and consider it to be unethical. An Individualist would see this case as unethical because Russia was had won a medal with the aid of performance enhancing drugs. By taking meldonium, a performance enhancing drug that is known to increase one’s stamina, that was previously banned from the Olympics, Alexander Krushelnitckii, a Russian curler was able to become a better competitor and win a bronze medal by breaking the rules of the game, making his actions unethical.  


Immanuel Kant was the creator of Kantian business ethics. Kantianism is based on four basic principles. The four basic principles of Kantianism are to act rationally, allow and help people, to make rational decisions, respect people, their autonomy, and their individual needs and differences, and be motivated by good will. A Kantian who reviews this case would consider it to be unethical. Alexander Krushelnitckii, a curler from the Russian Olympic team took performance enhancing drugs and tried to compete in the Olympics without announcing his use of performance enhancing drugs. By taking performance enhancing drugs which is against Olympic rules, Krushelnitckii showed a lack of respect for the athletes competing against him. He also showed a lack of respect for his teammates who were not taking performance enhancing drugs and were stripped of their medal because they played alongside him. Furthermore, Krushelnitckii was not acting with goodwill. Acting with good will is defined as seeking to do what is right because it is right. Breaking the rules by taking performance enhancing drugs is a violating of good will.


The theory of Utilitarian business ethics is based on two factors that are focused on maximizing happiness in yourself and others, these two factors are egoism and Altruism. Egoism is defined as maximizing your own happiness, altruism is based on maximizing happiness in others. A Utilitarian reviewing this case would view it as unethical. A utilitarian would view this case as unethical because Alexander Krushelnitckii did not satisfy the requirements of egoism and altruism. By taking performance enhancing drugs Krushelnitckii maximized his own happiness by obtaining a bronze medal but did not maximize the happiness of others. For example, after news about Krushelnitckii taking performance enhancing drugs was leaked to the public, both fans of other teams, members of competing teams, and members of his own team were disappointed. The Russian athlete was solely focusing on himself rather than his team, his fans, and members of competing teams.

Virtue Theory

Virtue theory focuses on the act performed and the reasons why it is unethical. Virtue theory focuses on four characteristics to determine whether or not an act is ethical, these four characteristics include courage, honesty, temperance, and justice. Throughout this case the Russian curler, Alexander Krushelnitckii lacked each of the four characteristics. He lacked the courage to follow the rules and compete fairly against other teams. Krushelnitckii acted immoral by taking performance enhancing drugs and being being unjust, trying to hide the presence of meldonium in his system. Therefore, the actions presented in this case would be considered unethical when analyzing from the standpoint of a virtue theorist.


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