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Saturday, January 26, 2013

Lance Really Did Win

Rick Santorum of all people nailed this one. I never cared for Rick in any way, not his politics, his personality, his whole holier than thou, but he nailed this one. On a talk show talking about Lance Armstrong and his apology to the world and Oprah and so forth, he said: "Well he won. He lived the life. He lived a life a million people would kill for and still is." Well, Rick, I tip my hat. He did sum up the great irony of a man who cheated on an epic scale and won Tour De Frances innumerable and  wound it all up with the highest rated interview ever on Oprah.

And yes he has been disgraced. And yes he has been stripped of his wins, but really, he is doing a lot better than all the people he screwed. Think about all those guys who would have won the Tour de France if Lance had not beat them. Think about all the doping that cheated countless others out of their chance in history. Immortality. There are unsung champions out there who will never be heard from because Lance stacked the deck and stole their glory. Who will sue for them?

No one. They will just be the people Lance Armstrong beat. And it doesnt matter that he did it unfairly and that he should not have won. He blocked the whole: may the best man win thing. He took the glory and the money and the fame and he took it from others who trained just as hard as he did but never doped. And there were others who did dope and lost but there were many who competed honestly and lost because Armstrong and his team had to have an edge. And he altered history forever.

Forget about all those people he ruined with his lawsuits or the people he bullied into silence. They really got the Lance screw job  and little can be done for them. Sure, everyone will sue him but he has millions and will fight them off. And now he is asking to compete again. The supreme arrogance of  that is astounding. His name should be stricken from cycling forever  but we live on earth and he probably will be able to compete again.

And I go back to old Rick Santorum, pointing out sanctimoniously on the talk show, stopping the conversation with the one true sentence Hemingway built his life on: "Well he won didn't he? In the end he did win."  Right on Rick.
Rocket Man...the American Dream turned upside down

Books by William Hazelgrove