Accusations without proof - sadly, it's becoming a mainstay of our day to day lives - mostly dismissed as idle gossip or petty tabloid slander, but they are still merely heresay. The last time one man wielded heresay to ruin a man's life, with any success, was in the 1950's - that man was Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy. This week another self-rightous, self-appointed Witchfinder General joined the list of McCarthy, Karl Rove, Darrell Issa and other professional shit-stirrers - the CEO of the "U.S. Anti-Doping Agency" Travis Tygart - with his personal attacks on Lance Armstrong.
The seven time Tour de France winner announced in a statement Thursday, that "Enough is enough," and that dealing with the claims that he had cheated since 1999 had taken a toll on both his family and his work, leading him to his decision to no longer participate in Tygart's witch hunt. I spend a great deal of time writing (bitching) about people who disappoint me and not enough time about those that we should celebrate. Lance Armstrong is an amazing athelete, cancer survivor, face of an amazing foundation and now a personal hero of mine for saying "Fuck You" to the USADA - which I'd like to point out is a non-governental and self-proclaimed "anti-doping" organization, with only support of the major sports leagues, and no authority remove anything.
Armstrong has passed each and every medical test forced upon him by the USADA and the charges are back only by hearsay. Hmmmm, let's dig up McCarthy and form another Senate subcommittee shall we, this is McCarthyism at it's finest. Unlike other atheletes caught in controversy, Armstrong's sponsors, Nike, Anheuser-Busch, Oakley and his Livestrong Foundation, remain firmly behind him. Perhaps social media should descend upon Tygart like he was Susan G. Komen or Todd Akin and put an end to this kind of persecution once and for all - or better yet, file so many libel suits that he can no longer focus on personal witch hunts.
"I know who won those seven Tours," Armstrong said in the statement. "The toughest event in the world where the strongest man wins. Nobody can ever change that. Especially Travis Tygart." We know too, Lance. Livestrong. I wear my yellow bracelet with pride, more today than ever. Standstrong!
[This was written under the influence of that strongest of performance enhancing supplements - common sense and justice. I speak out against any tyrany, not only because it's the right thing to do - but in the memory of the Ten Hollywood writers who stood up to McCarthy regardless of consequence.]