I Still Do, #Livestrong

20
Mar
2015

DCIM104SPORT

If all you’re concerned about is Lance Armstrong being a doping, lying, cheating cyclist…then you’re focused on the wrong story.

It’s not your fault, really.  Our entire society revolves around the wrong story most of the time.

Think about it for a second.  War and violence will always get 1000% more exposure than stories about peace.  Those celebrities who do something good are over-shadowed by rumors and gossip of the celebrity scandals.  Even in our own small circles, we tend to talk about what’s wrong instead of what’s right.

I watched The Armstrong Lie documentary today and wish I could have written this post immediately following.  I was fired up, emotional, and ready to put the world in its place.  It’s been a few hours, but my outrage and head shaking continues.

Put everything else aside for a second, and think about all the inspiration and motivation Lance and the Livestrong organization have fueled the world with.  There is absolutely no denying this.  Because of Lance Armstrong, there are millions of people who have developed a kick ass attitude towards cancer, and battled their way out of the impossible.

Have you seen the videos and the images?  Of cancer patients and survivors bleeding emotion from every pore of their bodies?

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However, the stories are focused on the big bad Lance Armstrong who lied, deceived, and cheated.  In the whole scheme of the world, how the fuck does that really affect things?  He faked his way to celebrity, money, and power.  The world goes on.

As expected, the comments have started coming in about how this story is about lying, deceiving, and power.  Exactly.  This sort of story also happens every single day in business and politics.  Somehow these seem to remain hidden from the public.  Interesting, huh?

This story creates negative emotions.  It gets some people thinking about how they can cheat their way to success.  Oh, and it definitely doesn’t stop this sort of thing from ever happening again.

If the real story were on all the good created, the world would then be affected in a positive way.  The power Lance helped create with Livestrong inspired lives, motivated people, and changed the world.  All that other crap really only has to do with a bicycle race.

So “The lying cyclist who doped his way to winning a bicycle race” wins out over “Armstrong inspires people to kick cancer’s ass”.

I Love Cycling, but come on….it’s just an effing bicycle race.

It’s time we all fight against the brain-washing media, and decide for ourselves what is good and right in the world.

I Still Do, Livestrong.  How about you?

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8 Responses to “ I Still Do, #Livestrong ”

  1. Mícheál MacGiobúin on March 21, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    Thanks for getting back Darryl. It’s a topic that can be debated no end. Being Irish I have a particular perspective (I am one of your listeners in Ireland).

    I feel bad being so forceful in what I said, given your calm response. I do accept the general proposition that there is a focus on the negative rather than the positive.

    I love the podcast.

    Mícheál

    • Darryl on March 21, 2015 at 2:01 pm

      You’re welcome, Micheal. I honestly wasn’t trying to piss anyone off with my comments or invoke arguments. I know I’m likely not of the majority who feels the way I do about this whole Lance thing (and other similar events around the world), but just had to get some of my feelings down.

      Yeah, I love the Irish. Seriously. Thanks for being a follower of both Loving the Bike and Cycling 360. We really appreciate it.

      Darryl

  2. Mícheál MacGiobúin on March 20, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    You make the argument Armstrong did lots of good and the focus should be on that because his bad behaviour pales in comparison to that good work and, in any event, his bad behaviour is replicated every day in other spheres of life meaning at least you think it isn’t exceptional. You also blame the media for the negative Armstrong legacy.

    A few points to note:

    (1) for many decades before Armstrong, people expended huge effort raising cancer awareness and, in particular, developing treatments: something which actually beats cancer. To suggest “millions” of people were motivated etc by only Armstrong is to walk right past those who have dedicated their lives to battling cancer as if they, and their efforts, ceased to exist and be of relevance upon the founding of livestrong.

    (2) Accepting that Livestrong has done good work (but in the context of other people/organisations doing so also as I mention above), why do you credit Armstrong only for that good work? Were there no other people working there? Did they not do good things? Why do you (or should the general public) choose to specifically attribute their good work and anything of merit Livestrong ever did to Armstrong?

    (3) Armstrong repeatedly used the fact of his having had and surviving cancer for personal gain by way of rubbishing doping allegations to keep his career and sponsorship going and, quite frankly, guilt tripping anyone out of pursuing him on the issue.this alone excludes him from any positive outcome of a consideration of the totality of his actions throughout his life when assessing his legacy. I, like many other people, unfortunately know a number of people with cancer. If I were to confront them about their actions in a given situation and their response was to ask me why they would do such a thing being a cancer survivor, I would run a mile with the shame; as did many of those who confronted armstrong. It takes a particular depravity to use your cancer to cover up for your lies while simultaneously heading up an organisation like Livestrong. It debases your actions and renders them insincere, at best.

    (4) The story of Armstrong on the bike is not about the cheating. It’s about the cover up. To simply call him a cheat implies he was no worse than the rest. This ignores the fact that he attempted to end people, and I really mean end: he very publicly vilified people, lied about them, implied awful things about them, made them out to be cancer survivor-bashing sore losers, successfully sued them thereby jeopardising their livelihood and ruining their families’ lives. This behaviour does not happen every day in business or politics. This was exceptional, extremely so. Armstrong’s conduct was on the upper scale of lying/cheating/bullying/attacking that you might hear about in any sphere of life.

    (5) the reason for all of this nasty stuff, the lies, the attempts (often successful) to break people and ruin them: money. All of this was for personal enrichment. Nothing more or less; it is that extraordinarily selfish. Armstrong pursued money on the backs of other people, through lies, through abuse of goodwill generated by Livestrong, through reliance on people’s decency to believe no one would actually cover up their lies by using their cancer as a weapon. We’re talking millions. The greed is astounding. Should a a person be able to amass vast personal wealth on the back of such despicable conduct? Of course not! It was wrong when bernie madoff cheated, lied and extorted his way to riches, why not Armstrong?

    (6) in my view, every time Armstrong used his cancer as an attack on those who questioned him, he relied on the goodwill generated by Livestrong and, indeed, the support of the very people it is there to assist, to get him out of jail. I mean, who could possibly believe the cancer survivor with the cancer foundation would endanger his previous second chance life by abusing his body and lying about it? Armstrong was not slow about propagating this notion. He made Livestrong, in part, about himself to protect his nefarious endeavours. That is disgusting.

    Most of all Armstrong is a thief. A thief of money, a thief of goodwill, a thief of decency, and a thief of spirit.

    Support Livestrong, but don’t be fooled that it was all armstrong’s work or that he didn’t abuse the goodwill arising from it. Beware false idols.

    • Darryl on March 21, 2015 at 7:47 am

      Thanks for your feedback on this article. It wasn’t intended to be something that promoted team Armstrong, but I figured it would stir up the for/against rivalry.

      I’ve never done anything even close to as bad as what Lance was a part of, but at the end of the day my wish is that people would remember the good I’ve done and not focus on the bad.

      You are totally right in all you’ve said, and I appreciate your comments.

  3. Bob Sponge on March 20, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    Professional cycling and possibly even semi-pro/amateur competitive cycling is rather corrupt. Lance was one of the best cheaters out of all the cheaters he cheated against. The problem is, he and others pretended there was a simple decision tree – cheat or don’t. How about a third option? Compete clean and turn the cheaters in. After all, most of the riders said they knew that each was cheating, therefore they never spoke up.

    Lance did lots of good through Livestrong. No argument. There are numerous examples of people doing wrong in one area of life doing good in another. Doing right in one area doesn’t overwrite the wrong in the other.

    Lance still has a cancer of sorts. He can’t keep himself out of the media. He needs to lay low for a number of years. Let the public forget a bit, which isn’t hard to do when one considers our short attention spans. From there he could probably do a lot of good and begin to repair his legacy a bit. Instead he insists on staying in the spotlight with interviews, stupid driving decisions, and doing rides in the most public of charity rides.

    • Darryl on March 21, 2015 at 7:48 am

      Thanks for your input, Bob. Makes you kind of wonder why people desire to be celebrities or professionals doesn’t it. Is it really worth all the crap?

  4. Bethel Strong on March 20, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I agree 100%. What Lance has done for cancer and cycling is un-measurable as far as how he has helped so many people with their battles with cancer.
    As far as the doping and cycling, he put cycling on the map here in the USA. Before Lance, cycling was a just a kid on a mountain bike during the summer. Now cycling is a big time sport here.
    Plus all the people that sponsored Lance during his hay day, made millions off of him and I’d be willing to bet they know about the doping and cheating, maybe even encouraged him to continue with it. We only like a Winner. No one really cares about who comes in second or the fact that he was fighting cancer. All they care about was the fact that he was Winning and making them Big Time Money.
    Now, he is the only bad guy in this. I say if he has to return all his Medals and winning, so should the Sponsors. But, no way will that happen.
    Plus, the sport of cycling at the Elite level, I’d bet back then there were more cheating going on than we will ever know.
    Look at other sports, they can beat up their wife and kids, kill people, abuse animals, steal and, still if they are the best at their position, someone will take them and pay them millions, because when you get down to it…It’s only about Winning and making Money.
    I’m now tired of writing and Long Live Livestrong Organization and Lance Armstrong!!

    • Darryl on March 21, 2015 at 7:51 am

      Thanks Bethel. This is one of those black and white issues. People either see the dark side or the positive side of all this. I choose to think of the good, and let the other stuff just be.

      It’s funny how people comment as if the news they know is the absolute truth. We all know that what is displayed in the media and news is not exactly the truth, but what they want us to believe.

      Lance did some very dumb things, and being so cocky really kicked his ass in the end…..but I’ll remember the positive side and wish that it was this part that had the media fuel behind it.

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