Ever since the USADA has been all over Lance Armstrong about his supposed blood doping during his professional career, fans have been enraged. And ever since Armstrong bowed out of further investigations and relinquished his seven Tour de France titles, those fans have become even more enraged. So much so that the CEO of the USADA is now receiving death threats.
Chief executive officer of the United States Anti-Doping Agency, Travis Tygart, told the French publication L’Équipe that he received three death threats since the Armstrong investigation. Lance and his fans think the USADA simply has a vendetta against him, but Tygart, of course, sees it differently:
In America the public opinion is torn in two. Some don’t like me, others respect that I have no other choice than follow the procedures in Armstrong’s case, just like for any other citizen. We either bury this case or we do our job. I love this job and I know why I do it.
Just like for any other citizen? The USDAD clearly has not treated Lance like any other citizen. They have singled him out and conducted this investigation unfairly. Just how many drug tests does someone need to pass before they are left alone? In Armstrong’s case it was over 500, and yet Tygart and his cohorts continued on this “witch hunt” as Lance referred to it when he made his final statement on the matter:
There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, “Enough is enough.” For me, that time is now. I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999. Over the past three years, I have been subjected to a two-year federal criminal investigation followed by Travis Tygart’s unconstitutional witch hunt. The toll this has taken on my family, and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today – finished with this nonsense.
So divided people stand over this issue–most with Armstrong it seems based on his 3,700,000 Twitter followers and thousands of Tweets of support. But does that mean death threats are appropriate for the man who is responsible for banning him for life and stripping him of his titles? Of course not.
Despite those threats though, Tygart went on to say that he’s not backing down:
I accept being accused, mistreated. That’s me, the public face of USADA. Am I a target? I won’t shirk my responsibility. The most important thing is to protect my team. And to maintain the respect of the athletes who don’t cheat.
The threats are being investigated by the FBI.
Tell us what you think is a more appropriate way to handle anger over Armstrong’s fate.