Enhanced Games Wants To Be “Modern Reinvention” of the Olympics

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The Enhanced Games’ president Aron D’Souza has secured funding from PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel and former Coinbase CTO Balaji Srinivasan, among others.

D’Souza calls the Enhanced Games a “new model of sports that openly celebrates scientific innovation and honestly represents the use of performance enhancements in sports today.” He explains, “Just as the ancient Olympics were revived and renovated in 1896 for the Victorian world, the Enhanced Games is once again renovating the Olympic model for the twenty-first century. In the era of accelerating technological and scientific change, the world needs a sporting event that embraces the future, particularly advances in medical science,”

The press release includes support from Michael Sagner, clinician at King’s College London and a member of the Scientific and Medical Advisory Commission of the Enhanced Games: “Contemporary drug testing practised in sports today is not necessarily about athlete safety; it often skews the public perception of fairness and health in competitive sports. Enhanced will be adopting a sophisticated safety protocol which puts the athlete’s health first – including comprehensive health checks before and after competitions. As well as advanced screening to check for pre-existing conditions, for example, cardiac risk.”

The games face harsh criticism. Journalist Gavin Cooney says, “the Enhanced Games shouldn’t allow us to change what we think about the present. They have done us all a favour by presenting us with such a bleak vision of collective surrender to doping. They are honest in this respect: this would be no celebration of human achievement, but a celebration of science.”

1. Would you watch an Olympics-like games in which athletes are encouraged to dope? Explain your answer.

2. Can the Enhanced Games be a safe competition for athletes? Explain your answer.

3. Should doping be allowed in the traditional Olympics? Why or why not?

Gavin Cooney, “The Enhanced Games: ‘Doping Olympics’ Shows Us the Bleakest Future in the Fight Against PED Use,” the42.ie, Feb. 8, 2024

Enhanced Games, “Seed Funding Announcement,” enhanced.org, Jan. 30, 2024