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September 10, 2012 | by  | in Opinion |
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Nothin’ But Net

What’s All the Fuss about with lance armstrong

I mean, a Tour de France cyclist doped? What’s new? That’s not a headline, it’s the unofficial slogan of the Tour.

I guess I do understand the uproar. He’s a bloke who made an absolute truckload of cash from being the guy who dominated the Tour for the biggest part of a decade. And now we know he did it by cheating.

The truth is, as much as we love a winner, we love a loser even more.

If I’m honest, Armstrong hasn’t actually been caught doping. He has decided not to appeal against the charges laid against him, claiming that he would have lost the case because of a dodgy jury.

Smells like bullshit, but let’s move on.

It’s a clever PR move which now means that everybody who chooses to write a nasty paragraph about him in a newspaper has to include a disclaimer like the one above. It salvages some semblance of respectability.

I’m of the opinion that the guy doped, but that’s not the point. The thing that has grabbed me about this whole ordeal has been the ridiculous media coverage.

It’s similar to Valerie Adams’ winning of the gold medal. The focus has been on the cheat, Nadzeya Ostapchuk. There have been nowhere near enough headlines reading: “Congratulations, Val”. Is the permanent loss of her medal and respect in her sport not enough punishment for Ostapchuk?

Apparently, no. Our papers chose to focus on her unlucky resemblance to the obesekid in Two and a Half Men. Even our most respected journalists have been struck by bouts of extreme jingoism (I’m looking at you, Eric Young). It’s not news. It certainly doesn’t warrant tirades of abuse on social media from our ‘best’ reporters.

Tiger Woods is the biggest casualty of such attitudes. The man cheated on his wife. It’s certainly not a wise move, and he comes across as one heck of a bastard, but in no way did it require him to quit his job for two years. Marriage counselling? Yes. A slap across the face? Yes. Slow down on the hookers? Absolutely, unequivocally yes. But a break from golf? Fuck no.

I suspect Lance Armstrong will suffer a similar fate. The story will be “Lance the Loser”, rather than the next guy as a winner. In saying that, the next guy probably doped too. And the guy behind him, and the next dozen as well. So really, nobody wins.

At least in Valerie Adams we have a winner. Let’s embrace that.

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