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We support Lance Armstrong

June 14, 2012

You have to be kidding me. According to the Washington Post…..

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency brought formal doping charges against former cyclist  Lance Armstrong in an action that could cost him his seven Tour de France titles, according to a letter sent to Armstrong and several others Tuesday.

As a result of the formal charges, Armstrong has been immediately banned from competition in triathlons, a sport he took up after his retirement from cycling in 2011.

In the 15-page charging letter obtained by The Post, USADA made previously unpublicized allegations against Armstrong, alleging it collected blood samples from Armstrong in 2009 and 2010 that were “fully consistent with blood ma­nipu­la­tion including EPO use and/or blood transfusions.”

Mr. Armstrong immediately responded…..

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.

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.”

You have to be kidding me. You have to be. Do I live in the United States of Amercia? My taxpayer dollars are funding this?????? Meanwhile the teenage girl who came to the clinic who happens to be on my tax dollar and has Hodgkin’s was sent home with a disgnosis of Mono. I don’t need to be a damn genius to figure this out.

When you have met and raced Lance Armstrong and then something like this happens, people suddenly begin calling you for opinions and quotes. So here is where I stand….

I 100% without one single doubt support Lance Armstrong. I believe the US Anti Doping Agency is on a witch hunt.

Here are the facts as I know and understand them:

  • Lance Armstrong has never failed a drug test. He has been tested over 500 times in his 25 year career.
  • Lance Armstrong has  denied using any kind of performance enhancement anything.
  • Those who have accused him….. correct me if I am wrong here….. those who have accused him….. Landis, Hamilton to be specific both denied ever using performance enhancing drugs. Both wrote books (correct me if I am wrong?) denying the use of performance enhancing drugs. Both later admitted to using performance enhancing drugs.

So we have people accusing a man who has not failed 500 drug tests, of using. Those people who are accusing…. are proven liars.

What has Lance Armstrong ever lied about?

Is he not one of the most TESTED athletes on the planet? Has he not PASSED, or NOT FAILED over 500 drug tests?

Let me tell you what I DO know for sure. I have looked into the eyes of many people throughout my lifetime. As a trauma nurse I looked into the eyes of liars and killers. We had to save them too.

I have looked Lance Armstrong in the eye. You might recall that I have MET this man. Have you?????????  This man has nothing to hide. If you tell me that by looking a man in the eye is not enough to determine guilt or innocence….. I will point out to you that apparently neither is the EVIDENCE. This man is NOT a liar.

We live in a country that states we are innocent until proven guilty. 500 drug tests. Not failed. Passed. That’s not enough to be proven innocent? What else do you want from this man?

Do you want him to use his status in this world to do something good? Oh WAIT……. he has. It’s called LiveStrong. You might have heard of it? You might have one of those yellow bracelets on your wrist. You might have wanted Mr. Armstrong to do something the moment someone YOU loved was diagnosed.

That changes things a bit doesn’t it?

Suddenly the spite and jealousy you have for a man who truly lived the American dream….. turns into something else. One moment you hate the man because he has his own plane and he has a few houses….. I believe those are things he worked for and earned by the way….. suddenly you are on the other side of the bad news. The Chest X ray….. YOUR Chest X ray was NOT clear. YOUR blood work was NOT fine.

That bloody cough was NOT because you coughed too hard.

Where is the first place you go? Livestrong.org. And they open you with welcome arms. Regardless of what you said or thought or made the hell up. They support you anyways.

I think we all learned from the Duel in the Pool that if we do come together we common folks can in fact….. make a difference. So who is going to be the one to defend Lance Armstrong? Who is going to be the one to come to his side?

We are. That’s who. Because I seem to believe this country is constructed of elected officials who represent the people of these United States. And I seem to believe that those elected officials dismissed all charges against Mr. Armstrong MONTHS AGO.

Why a quasi government agency then has the power to resurrect such bullshit is allowed to???? That’s beyond me.

Yesterday we began a petition. We have signatures from New York City to Singapore. We would like YOU to sign it and show your support. Click right here to do that. What am I going to do with  it? I am going to find whomever it is that I need to take it to, and take it to them. If they truly represent me, then they are going to listen to what I have to say. What we have to say. Do we have a say? In this day and age do we the people really have a say?

What we have to say is this: Leave the man alone. Drop these ridiculous charges, move along. Mr. Armstrong has had our backs. He’s helped us when we needed it. Now it’s our turn. Join me in supporting Lance Armstrong, and let’s end this damn witch hunt and the corrupted souls who began it.

Can we really do anything with our voices? Can we really do anything with a petition? We are talking about a billion dollar lawsuit here.

That our tax dollars are funding.

I think we can.

If you’d like to leave a comment, I welcome all constructive insightful comments. I am open to learning and seeing another point of view and having a good conversation about topics.  You are welcome to respectfully disagree with me, as I may in turn respectfully disagree with you.

My comments are screened by someone other than myself, all comments written with a rude tone, especially on the subject of Mr. Armstrong….I won’t even see.

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32 comments

  1. I don’t get it…it’s all very strange….if charges were dropped 2 years ago, how can they just go and dig around again? based on what??

    but Mary, can you please explain this to me ??
    -they are accusing him of doping and looking to strip his TdeF titles. This was in cycling.

    How can “they” justify the ban on triathlon?

    Here’s my thoughts-
    (let’s play devils advocate here)
    say Joe cheated on his math test and the teacher gives him a failing grade in math for cheating. Ok. Understood.
    BUT
    should his English teach fail him in that class as well based on his action in Math??


    • Hey I am in agreeance with Mary but just wanted to answer your questions. I find it ridiculous that people are still going after him. My legal background can help explain this a little bit….

      The USADA has no power to prosecute Lance criminally. However, they do have the power to investigate whether he doped in his TDF wins and during his career as a professional cyclist. There is an 8 year statute of limitations.

      On the other hand, the federal government dropped its two year investigation of Lance earlier this year. They were investigating whether or not to bring criminal charges against Lance for doping in professional competition. While the federal government decided not bring criminal charges, the USADA apparently liked what the federal government dragged up from its investigation.

      Unfortunately, the ban on triathlon came from Ironman (World Triathlon Corporation). In the rules set forth by Ironman, professional triathletes are not eligible to compete if there is an open USADA charge against them. I am not clear on the specifics there but I know WTC issued his ban from competition. I am sure they did not want to do so because they are really riding the Lance factor for bigger profits and TV deals. However, the WTC rules required them to ban Lance.

      A few things that are unclear to me (without having the time to research at the moment):

      – I am not sure how USADA would strip Lance of his TDF wins. I am guessing any positive determination of doping would require TDF to strip his titles.


  2. Well written Mary. I don’t know the players as well as you,but what I see is one of America’s greatest athletes…ever….being subjected to senseless amount of quasi-judicial proceedings when he has already passed and NEVER FAILED 500 performance enhancing drug tests. It’s sad, frustrating and so unconstitutional that I think every American athlete how has some modicum of success should feel frightened and do something to support Lance. First Lance….then who? Michael Phelps? Keep up the fight, Lance is lucky to have you in his court.


  3. It’s time to leave Lance alone. Lance did nothing more than what the other top riders were doing at the time. The only difference is he was better at not being caught. As far as looking eye to eye with someone to see if they are lying, all I can say that even as a person who made a living as a trial lawyer – the difference between a good liar and a bad liar is that the good liar never gets caught.


    • Good points Bob….. I will always respect a respectful point of view!


  4. I’m with Bob…don’t go after the guy who won and leave everyone else behind. Cycling is notorious for blood doping. I want to believe that Lance is super human, but in the end the playing field was even (because ‘everyone’ does it) and its time to let it go.


    • That’s a good point Kim. Am I understanding this right, that they have “accused the team” but “only charged” Lance?

      I appreciate a good discussion, THANK YOU!


  5. I am right with you. I totally support Lance. Coach Jeff Kline made a great point. This guy has been out performing everybody since he was a teenager. He is just a great athlete. He is willing to work harder than the next guy and he has surrounded himself with the best in the field. I think the USADA is on a witch hunt.


    • Another good point Anne.

      He has outperformned everyone since he was how old?

      500 drug tests, not one failed. Am I correct when I state that? That’s the part I just can’t get past.


    • I think one of Lance’s greatest talents is his ability to withstand a very high level of pain. I’ve often attributed it to having experienced the pain of cancer & cancer treatment. After that he could tolerate anything.


      • THAT is an excellent point.

        Those of us who have been through things that are life threatening, have that little extra depth.

        I agree with that 100%.


  6. Can anyone explain to me why they think this is a witch hunt? What benefit does the USADA or anyone for that matter get by “going after” Lance? If we want to rid the sport of drugs then these are the steps that need to be taken. Everyone keeps saying that he’s been tested 500 times and passed. Well, that’s great but what do you know about the testing? Between all the admitted dopers there were several hundred tests that came out “negative” too yet they were still proven to be doping.

    I get it though. I understand that people will rally around people they admire no matter what. I too have met Lance, I’ve seen him race up close, and the truth is he’s just a man like you and me that overcame big things. Which is great. But that doesn’t make him extra special or so special that he can avoid the consequences. If he did dope then it needs to be followed through and dealt with. Plain and simple.

    I don’t care whether you own the biggest charity in the world and raises more money than anyone in the world that benefits the poor, sick, and challenged. If you do something wrong and/or illegal then you must face the consequences.I work for the largest Cancer funding organization in the United States so I know what Livestrong does (and sadly, what they don’t do too but that’s another story) and that’s great.
    I don’t hate and never have hated Lance. I so badly wanted to see him race the IM in France. But you know what, I’ve also known, without a doubt, that he doped. No, he shouldn’t go to jail for it. In fact, i don’t think they should strip the Tour titles. I honestly wish they could just erase the Tour races as if they never happened. This drug issue needs to be fixed. And unlike many other things in our society that are somewhat hopeless I feel that doping in endurance sports can be fixed. But we need to start with a clean slate. People that did wrong need to be “witch hunted” because if Lance or any other top level athlete can get away with this then it does become less hopeful.


    • Ah, now HERE is a conversation I can HAVE!

      From my point of view…. I don’t have privvy to test results and all of that.

      He has never failed a drug test. This is correct, right?

      That’s really my biggest point. And I am asking if I am correct to ask….. was there one? Not to be contradictory, real question.

      It’s a witch hunt, because according to what I understand of the 15 page USADA letter, they are accusing his whole team but charging only him?

      Am I correct on this one (I am VERY open to not being correct…. so I am honestly asking) is this evidence heresay? Thing people have seen or said?

      We all know cycling is corrupt. I agree with you that I’d like to see the sport clean.

      That is where I come from. 500 drug tests. Not one positive.

      I am not saying that as a “nuff said” statement, I am stating that as what I believe to be a fact.

      What do you think?


      • I literally passed by hundres of cops and didn’t get a speeding ticket in 20 years. Does that me I always drove the speed limit? I can assure you it does not. Outside small towns (where I thought there was a greater likelihood of being caught) I thought the signs meant the limit of how slow you are allowed to go. Not getting caught exceeding a law/rule does not mean you never did. Similarly it does not mean you did. It’s irrelevant whether Lance was tested clean a bizillion times. Lance is an intelligent guy and knows this, so every time he says it I ask myself why does he rely so heavily on it. As far as never using blood boosting drugs, it’s my understand that he was prescribed them, as many cancer patients are, as part of his treatment – however I could be completely wrong on this.


      • Those are really good points Bob. (I kind of wish we were having this discussion over coffee as I think it would be FUN!). I definitley hadn’t considered things this way.

        THANK YOU for this. I love this discussion. Something to think about.


      • Here’s the formal letter sent to Lance regarding the accusations from the USADA: http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/armstrongcharging0613.pdf

        The letter names several people on his team not just Lance in the formal investigation. The reason Lance appears to be singled out is because he failed to respond and get interviewed by the USADA during the investigation. The fourth paragraph states that Lance was asked to testify but he declined. Everyone on his team, however, agreed to meet and get interviewed.

        And yes, according to the formal letter, they are stating that his 2001 test tested positive for EPO and his tests in 2009 and 2010 are consistent with blood manipulation and EPO.

        I’ll rephrase what I mentioned earlier about the 500 drug tests. Remember Marion Jones? She was “caught” doping. Well, she never had a positive drug test either. Not a lot of people know that. She forfeited her olympic medals and was sentenced to prison. She never failed a drug test. 500 “negative” tests mean nothing.

        Also, some people are saying that the Justice Dept already tried to “get” him and they dropped the case. But in fact, that was a different case.

        The Justice Dept was trying to convict him of violations of RICO statutes and federals fraud offenses, specifically using federal funds to facilitate doping. And as you know, they dropped the case.

        The USADA, however, is officially charging him of doping.

        I’m a huge fan of endurance sports. It’s what I do for a living and will continue to do so. I SO BADLY wanted to see Lance race IM in France later this month. But when you look at everything objectively it’s hard not to see that he is screwed in this whole thing.
        And unfortunately, I feel strongly, without a doubt that he doped so it’s not going to turn out good for him regardless.

        The people testifying against him have a lot to lose by doing so. If this was some sort of conspiracy against him or “witch hunt” as some people say then that would mean that several people in high places and several top athletes and his friends are going to great lengths and risks to do so. Which, in my eyes, makes it much more unbelievable.


      • You know what….. you bring up good points. Perhaps my own judgement is caught up in the Cancer issues, and they really are seperate issues.

        I just said this to someone else too, but I wish we were having this discussion over coffee. It would be an interesting round table, and you don’t find many people who can keep a level head about things that they are pasisonate like this.

        Let me ask you this…..

        In your opinion, should he be banned from Triathlon?

        In your opinion…. if you were the guy in charge of professional cycling…. what are the steps to clean it all up again, is it even possible? Or is it really a tainted sport?

        In your opinion…. back to Lance….. since this guy was a teenager he has consistently outperformed his competition…… is it possible that he’s just a step above in terms of talent (putting the allegations aside)…….

        I’d really be interested in your thoughts, you have a good way of making a point against an argument without being demeaning, and I mean that as a huge compliment!


  7. Lance is a hero athlete and a hero fund raiser for cancer. As a race director I would always welcome and be honered to have Lance participate in Survival Of the Shawangunks Triathlon. Not the IM but it is a fun little race.


    • WOULD THAT NOT BE THE MOST AWESOME THING IN THE WORLD?

      SOS is on my bucket list for sure. Is it sold out this year?


      • Yes, we’ve been sold out since Oct. 31. But as an independent RD I would always invite my hero Lance Armstrong!


    • As long as you don’t drug test for caffeine I’m in..:)


  8. Mmmmm….coffeee….but i just had my third espresso today so i don’t know if can handle another one:)

    I wish WTC did not have the rule they have and let him race until he’s proven guilty. I really want to see him race in Triathlon. So for several reasons, I wish he could still race at least this year. I had the opportunity to be his bike lead at Galveston 70.3 and i’ve never seen so many fans/people out for a triathlon before. It was crazy fun and brings new people in to the sport. I also co-own a triathlon store and Lance racing triathlon has potential to bring more business to our doorstep. So we were/are all looking forward to the “Lance-effect” to triathlon.

    Now, if he’s proven guilty then he should be banned for whatever time frame the sport sees fit.

    Can cycling be cleaned up? yes. Is it tainted? yes. What’s interesting about cycling and other endurance sports is that the top athletes make up a small percentage of the amount of people using drugs. All we hear about is the pro’s doping. You never hear about guys in the amateur level doing it. But, you know what, it’s happening in the amateur level. I read an Outside magazine article last year that made a good point. The amount of illegal drugs that were seized in the Balco case was so high that there aren’t enough pro athletes to consume them. So it’s safe to assume that it’s not just the pro’s using them.

    So, the first step I would take would be to start at the amateur level. This would include cycling events, marathons, tri’s, etc. Rock’n’Roll marathons for example are huge and yet none of the top athletes at those races are drug tested.
    What if Landis, or Contador, or Marion Jones, had been caught before they went pro?

    Sadly, an interesting fact, is that a guy from my hometown was supplying athletes like Jones and others with drugs. This guy started out by doping and selling them out of his dorm room at a small university here in Texas. If he had been caught earlier then who knows… You see, if you start at the amateur level, you also have the opportunity to disrupt the supply chain.

    Is Lance an exceptional athlete? YES. Without a doubt. Is he a step above everyone else. No, not everyone. There is always someone better, stronger, faster. Unfortunately endurance sports are not as glamorous as other sports like football, basketball, etc. I have coached several athletes in the last 15 years and have come across some out of this world, crazy fast and strong endurance athletes. But when it comes to making the decision to go to school, get a scholarship, and so forth, many times they choose to go another direction. For every pro endurance athlete there are hundred pro non-endurance athletes who make more than twice as much money. But this is why I feel there is hope to be able to change the sport.
    The NFL, NBA, MLB, have a lot to lose if they take a stricter stance on doping. Then there’s the unions that prevent a lot from changing.

    We are not the NFL, NBA, or MLB. And that’s an advantage we have to make the right changes and the right choices.


    • WAIT A MINUTE! Are you the shop I visited before Texas 70.3?

      I think this whole WTC thing is what upsets me the most. When he was here he stated that he didn’t even care if they took away his Tour titles. I just don’t feel that it’s right for them to prevent him from competing.

      I hear more and more amatuers using and for the LIFE of me I just don’t understand why. I don’t get it….. and you bring up a good point. In some cases the amateurs are the biggest % of the users.

      I like your plan and your thinkng!!!!

      Let’s plan on an espresso next year at Texas 70.3!


  9. Drugs/doping are parts of all sports. No one wants to watch Mr. Universe without steroids, baseball without the juice, football without the HGH…Its part of the game now. Its the job of coaches/trainers who are willing to deal with this to know the half-life of any substance ingested/injected by an athlete. They get paid to do this. Amateurs do it for the same reason the pros do-glory, faster times, besting their best, potential for advancement, idolizing the winners.

    I still think he’s guilty of it all, but I also think he lived by the rules of cycling at the time (both official and unofficial). I do not think less of him for it. He still had to ride the Alps. All the EPO in the world wouldn’t make me able to do that! The same is true for Mcgwire, Bonds, and all the NFL players who only pee in a cup rather than submit blood samples–I think no less of them, they are still better athletes than average and they are doing what is standard practice for success in their sports.


    • Good points Kim. Really good points.

      I think what saddens me most….. is the usage in the amateur realm. Perhaps if people were more happy with themselves and their lives, they wouldn’t feel the need?


  10. The majority of East German and Soviet athletes who competed during the seventies & eighties never failed drug tests either- doesn’t mean they never cheated nor that they should be above suspicion.
    I have a hard time believing Lance achieved what he did after suffering as he did especially with the number of prominent former team mates of his who have admitted doping offences. The dreamer in me hopes I am wrong though


    • Rian, that’s a really good point. My husband pointed out to me as well, that Marion Jones never failed a drug test either and we know what happened to her. So I am entirely open to the fact that not failing a drug test is not necessarily 100% proof.

      And I am also open to the fact that I WANT to believe. I can 100% admit that. While I am obviously a Lance Fan….. what made me a fan was not necessarily what he did on the field…. but what he has done OFF the field. I can admit that entity causes me to really be biased.

      for all of that….. I am guilty.

      It makes me really wonder….. when it comes to professional cycling and the Tour…. is it all too tainted to ever really get to the bottom of? And should what happened THEN determine what happens NOW?

      I hope that makes sense.


  11. I’m a 71 year old avid female bicyclist, and he is still my hero.



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