Lance Armstrong certainly has his share of haters. After 16 years of doping allegations that he was eventually cleared from, the seven-time Tour de France champion was served papers this week accusing him of doping once again–charges that you and I are wrongly paying for with our tax dollars.
Why can’t people just leave him alone?
Armstrong has served as a positive role model and source of inspiration to many over the years. Beating cancer, coming back to win the Tour, helping to fund and cure cancer, taking up triathlons professionally at age 40–and winning them. Quite frankly, the guy just kicks ass.
But now the ridiculous authorities at the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) are re-opening doping allegations and legal proceedings against Armstrong and five of his former teammates. As a result, he is banned from competing in anymore international Ironman triathlon races, including Ironman France, which he was slated to race next weekend.
The letter says Armstrong and five former cycling team associates engaged in a doping conspiracy from 1998 to 2011, the Post reported. Apparently, the USADA claims that they collected blood samples from Armstrong in 2009 and 2010 that were “fully consistent with blood manipulation including EPO use and/or blood transfusions.” And they say that riders will testify that Armstrong used EPO, blood transfusions, testosterone and masking agents, and that he distributed and administered drugs to other cyclists from 1998 to 2005.
But Lance is fighting back.
In a statement that he posted yesterday on Facebook, Armstrong defended himself, while pointing out that these charges are being funded with taxpayer dollars:
I have been notified that USADA, an organization largely funded by taxpayer dollars but governed only by self-written rules, intends to again dredge up discredited allegations dating back more than 16 years to prevent me from competing as a triathlete and try and strip me of the seven Tour de France victories I earned. These are the very same charges and the same witnesses that the Justice Department chose not to pursue after a two-year investigation. These charges are baseless, motivated by spite and advanced through testimony bought and paid for by promises of anonymity and immunity. Although USADA alleges a wide-ranging conspiracy extended over more than 16 years, I am the only athlete it has chosen to charge. USADA’s malice, its methods, its star-chamber practices, and its decision to punish first and adjudicate later all are at odds with our ideals of fairness and fair play.
He went on to say:
I have never doped, and, unlike many of my accusers, I have competed as an endurance athlete for 25 years with no spike in performance, passed more than 500 drug tests and never failed one. That USADA ignores this fundamental distinction and charges me instead of the admitted dopers says far more about USADA, its lack of fairness and this vendetta than it does about my guilt or innocence.
Is it just me, or is this a colossal waste of taxpayer dollars?
Tell us if you think this is fair.