* This bill has already passed the House, but today’s Sun-Times editorial reminded me to ask the question. The setup is from a recent Tribune story…
Student-athletes across the state would be subject to random drug testing throughout the season if a bill that was unanimously passed by the House on Thursday is approved by the Senate and signed by Gov. Pat Quinn.
Illinois last fall joined Texas, New Jersey and Florida in testing its high school athletes in a plan implemented and funded by the Illinois High School Association. Florida dropped its state-funded program in mid-February, citing a lack of money.
Sponsoring Rep. Jack Franks (D-Marengo) said the bill proposes testing an additional 1,000 student-athletes each year from at least 25 percent of Illinois high schools. […]
Of the 264 tests that were administered last fall, 258 came back negative; the six others were granted medical exceptions.
“I think it’s a good thing because it will even the playing field,” said Nazareth running back LaSteven McKinney, a junior. “With the old system, they had time to clear their system before a random test. I think most kids still think they won’t get caught.”
The Illinois chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union opposes the legislation because “there ought to be some basis on which to do that search,” said spokesman Ed Yohnka.
* The Question: Should Illinois’ high school athletes be randomly tested for performance enhancing drugs? Explain fully. Thanks.