I was disappointed to hear that the government (and 60 Minutes) is now going after bicycling legend Lance Armstrong. Just like with Barry Bonds, confidential grand jury testimony is somehow available to the media, and our tax dollars are being wasted pursing former top athletes instead of actually trying to solve the problems facing our society.
Like cancer. Lance Armstrong is a cancer survivor, and through his LiveStrong foundation he’s raised over $400 million dollars for medical research to fight the disease. What’s the gain in taking him down now?
When asked how his belief in God helped him beat cancer, he replied:
Everyone should believe in something, and I believe in surgery, chemotherapy, and my doctors.
Yep. Science. Among other things, we use it to improve vision, repair broken bones, cure diseases, manufacture high tech bicycles, rebuild arms and legs, and, yes, improve our body’s ability to perform. I suppose the line between allowed (alcohol, caffeine, tobacco, Lasix eye surgery, artificial nutritional supplements, Tommy John surgery) and forbidden (marijuana, amphetamines, steroids, artificial limbs, blood doping) has to be drawn somewhere, but it all feels pretty arbitrary. And rarely does it seem like bringing down our heros (McGwire, Bonds, Sosa, Pettitte, Clemens, and now Armstrong) is doing any of us any good for all the expense it costs us.
Note: Andy Pettitte was never one of my heroes, but he was the winningest pitcher of the 2000s, and, apparently, a steroid user.