And so, only now do we learn that the weapons of mass destruction were real. Barry Bonds had them in his medicine cabinet. Baseball fans love statistics, and the San Francisco Chronicle reporters have provided plenty — every pill, cream, lotion and chemical used by Bonds since 1998. Multiple witnesses. Corraboration. Details. Sharp, pointy needles. Hell, Bonds took steroids intended for cattle. Even Vince McMahon is saying "that shit ain't right ..."
But, you know, for a lot of people, facts just don't matter. It's a lot easier to ignore reality than it is to change your world view, and for many in the San Francisco Bay Area, Barry Bonds is still a hero — at least. Lying? Cheating? Dishonoring the game? Please.
On Tuesday night, we decided to find out exactly what today's youth thought about this ... the kids, if you will. We headed over to Bonds' old high school, Junipero Serra in San Mateo, to get various takes on the events of the past couple of days. The Padres' varsity basketball team (Serra is an all-boys school) was playing Lowell of San Francisco in the opening round of the state playoffs. We wanted to talk to Serra students to see if their opinion of their hero had changed. We were half expecting downcast looks and a few "Say it ain't so, Joe!" quotes. Man, were we wrong.
"I don't think he did it!" said sophomore Brian Noce, emphatically, hopping up and down for effect. "He wouldn't cheat. It was all weight training. There's no way he took steroids."
But the kids are not alone in their defense of Bonds. On local radio throughout the day, callers aligned with Barry by an estimated 10-1 ratio. The Bay Area is in very deep denial about this, we're sorry to say.
More reaction after the jump.
"He didn't do it. It's not steroids, he just works hard. All the kids here (at Serra) think the same thing."
— Kevin Danille, Serra junior.
"Bonds didn't take steroids. I don't know anyone at school who thinks he cheated."
— Matt Jauregui, Serra sophomore.
"I don't believe it. I think that he works hard and that the power comes from extra training. Besides, you need hand-eye coordination too. Taking steroids does not help you hit .300."
— Kevin McAlinun, Serra sophomore.
"This is a witch hunt. I feel sorry for an athlete like Tiger Woods, because when they're done with Barry, they're going to drag him down next."
— Caller to KNBR-680 AM Sportsphone on Tuesday night.
"It seems peculiar that when the most coveted record in baseball is set to be surpassed yet again by a person of non-European decent, the scrutiny grows. The fact of the matter is that Barry Bonds has never been photographed injecting or swallowing any performance enhancers."
— LStaley [SFGate.com]
"The Bonds story today is scurrilous — and I am contemplating canceling my subscription. ... Is this the way you are celebrating the approach of the baseball season? Shame on you."
— Baseballfan [SFGate.com]