BY KRISTIN MILANI
Lance Armstrong has been one of the biggest names in the athletic world for more than 10 years. He was renowned for holding a record seven consecutive Tour de France titles and was once seen as an inspirational cancer survivor who accomplished something no one else had. On Jan. 17, 2013, all of that came to an end.
Back in October, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency stripped him of all seven titles. Eleven days ago, the International Olympic Committee took away his bronze medal. After years of denying allegations of doping, Armstrong finally came clean in an interview with Oprah Winfrey on Jan. 17. It took him 13 years to man up and do the right thing.
Winfrey asked him to answer a series of questions with a yes or no answer. When asked if he used performance enhancing drugs such as human growth hormones, erythropoietin (EPO), testosterone and cortisone, Armstrong answered yes. He also admitted to blood doping before all seven Tour de France races and other competitions.
This type of situation shakes people’s beliefs about accomplishment and success to the core. Cycling is already under the microscope, but now every rider will pay a price. Anyone who does well will be looked at with suspicion.
To know that someone can sleep at night knowing that they’re living a complete lie is truly frightening. What happened to having a moral compass? Armstrong threw that out the window to get what he wanted. His integrity is shattered and will never be repaired. People were robbed due to his ruthless actions. Armstrong stole the titles from others, although many of them have either confessed or have been accused of cheating as well.
Armstrong is now getting exactly what he deserves. His actions impacted countless people, some of whom blew the whistle but who were ridiculed and threatened.
Defiant right up to his confession, Armstrong even had the audacity a few weeks ago to post a picture on Twitter of himself lying on a couch with his framed Tour de France jerseys on the wall behind him. It’s as if he was trying to trick himself into believing he earned the titles when he put them up.
Livestrong is now being called Liestrong. Everyone involved with the organization has been implicated because of how selfish Armstrong is. But all is not lost, because Armstrong has a new title, the Guinness World Record’s biggest liar.