Two Brothers Debate Latest on Lance Armstrong


ImageOne of my heroes is in the news again–Lance Armstrong.  Though it would be easy to join in the barrage of criticism for Lance, I refuse to partake, and I am guessing there are others like me who feel he deserves better.  After an email exchange that I had with my brother earlier today, I thought our sentiments might be worth sharing.  This sort of revelation has a way of bringing out the full range of emotions in people, and I have experienced many on this topic.  Perhaps you, too, have thought long and hard about the legacy of Lance Armstrong.  If so, then maybe you will take solace in knowing that many others are going through the same at this very moment.  Give this email exchange that I had with my brother a read, and share your own thoughts:
 
Gordy
 
I agree with your frustrations that he may have said too much, though I understand what might have motivated him.  I think his tragic flaw is his hubris–his overbearing sense of pride and self-confidence. He couldn’t stand losing the battle in the court of public opinion. Due to the witch hunt against him, his sponsors had dropped him and his ability to compete against world class athletes had been taken away. If he hadn’t considered fessing up to some degree (I think he is still not telling all), then he would be letting the bastards get him down. He is still young enough to be a superhuman athlete without the dope. Lots of people think he could win the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii. He was on track to compete there before the naysayers got their way. Next, I think they are hellbent on proving that Santa Claus doesn’t exist and that the Easter Bunny doesn’t really lay Cadbury eggs. 
 
Truth be told, I take caffeine pills daily to overcome a lack of sleep. Someday, I hope people don’t try to take away everything I have ever accomplished in my life because caffeine enhanced my performance.
 
In the end, when people reflect on Lance’s life and accomplishments, many will still remember him as the guy who almost died from cancer, came back to win 7 consecutive Tour de France titles, and inspired a generation of cancer sufferers and everyday Joe’s to never, ever, give up hope. In addition, Lance inspired Americans–kids and adults alike–to get on a bike and ride it like they had never ridden before, with determination, drive, and heart, if only to imagine for a moment that they, too, could conquer their foes in the Alps, overcoming their opponents on the steepest climbs and displaying awesome feats of superhuman proportion.  Like the legend of Paul Bunyan, Lance Armstrong’s legend will remain intact long after the dust settles on the doping hubbub. Unlike Paul Bunyan, the legend of Lance Armstrong is real. The enormity of his contributions to mankind cannot be erased by his imperfections.  
 
Dan

Sent from my iPhone

On Jan 14, 2013, at 8:42 PM, Gordy <@aol.com> wrote:

Now I think Armstrong is a idiot! Now I’ve lost respect for him! There is no reason in the world he needed to do that! Everyone uses blood doping in cycling, always have. They already stripped him of his official titles, screw everyone! Everyone in the pelaton was doping prior to the race for training or during at some point! No one has ever won without doping enless you go back to the pre medical information days.
           
            Thank you, Gordy
                            
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5 responses to “Two Brothers Debate Latest on Lance Armstrong

  1. I agree. He is still my hero for EVERYTHING! If he doped, he destroyed the field with all the other dopers(Landis and all the others he competed with were caught as well). He’s an qmazing athlete who I admire as a competitor and how he has lived.
    Ken VanderKlok

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  2. I really hadn’t follow him closely. He obvisously overcame some pretty significant challenges in his athletic career. Regardless of the doping, he was an amazing athlete. Unfortuneately, after watching 60 seconds of his Oprah interview and reading some of the most recent articles on how he treated people close to him, I lost all respect. He came accross as arogant, self centered, manipulative, all about me, money hungry, etc. You can have all the skills in the world in your respective arena; sports, music, business, etc. but if don’t treat people and the your vocation with respect and dignity I will not support you. So long Lance, it’s been good to not know you!

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    • Hi, Steve. Great to hear from you. Interesting perspective you share. I, too, take issue with people who are not decent human beings toward others. However, I have never put a lot of stake in people saying that Lance is a nasty person. Like Tiger, he was on another level when he was at his peak. Neither of them were favorites of their competitors, and they were both lightning rods for criticism, both on and off the field. Self-confidence and brashness in the competitive arena can be misread on the field of play. Away from the field of play, I believe that people show their true colors. This is where Tiger and Lance were different. While Tiger was cheating on his wife and paying them off to keep them quiet, Lance was spreading hope to cancer survivors via his LIVESTRONG foundation. He always has been very giving of his time to the cancer cause. I think it is a real stretch for people to suggest these efforts were only self-serving. I look forward to seeing the Oprah interviews, as I have not been able to see them yet. Maybe I will change my mind about him, but I doubt it. Stay in touch. –Dan

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  3. I did not see the interview but I have followed him for a long time and read his first book. Lance is a highly talented, disciplined person that has gone all out in life. I believe he has also been living life with a chip on his shoulder, if you will. He has hurt a lot of people along the way because he has not dealt with that chip. Read his first book and it will come alive regarding what I mean. So, he represents all of us but not on the kind of stage he was on. We all have “issues” we have faced and we will face. How we respond depends on where we are in our life and how “mature” we have become to deal with issues. Lance hopefully will examine who he is and where he is going to go with the rest of his life- just like us. We could trash him and what does that say about us? Do we want someone to trash us and walk away from us when we make a mistake or something happens? I wouldn’t want the camera on me all the time. As a side note, consider the Monte Teo story and look how the media doesn’t confirm their stories! I call everyday media- Media Gone Wild! I believe nothing from them and if I do it’s because I have seen and believed it with my own eyes. Besides, I have enough going on in my own life to waste too much time on television, especially talk shows. I wish I could get paid a lot of money to give everyone my opinion!
    Ken

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