“How do you feel about him…the fact that he cheated?”
“It doesn’t bother me,” she said.
“Why,” I asked. “I mean, I know you. You hate cheating.”
“I guess because I feel that everyone was doing it. So, that’s what he did…to level the playing field.”
“Yeah, agreed,” I said. “But, I have to say something’s not sitting right with me,” I added.
As Wifesy and I started the descent of our California hike, I worked it out in my head and told her what I was thinking.
“I guess what bothers me most is that he KNEW he was lying and in order to protect his lie, he tried to destroy the character of other people.”
“What do you mean?” asked Wifesy.
“Well, from what I’ve read there was this woman, Betsy Andreu, whose husband was a cyclist on Lance’s team. She testified for her husband against Lance. They settled out of court. She was just trying to protect her husband, so she told the truth about Lance’s doping. In return, Lance called her a crazy bitch. He knew he was lying and yet, he called her a crazy bitch. That doesn’t sit well with me. If you know you are lying and someone else is coming clean, say nothing. Walk away, maybe. But, to go on the attack when you KNOW you’re in the wrong. Nope, I don’t like it.”
That’s how I feel right about now. It’s not that Lance cheated. I’m pretty sure a lot of people cheat in professional sports. I’m not saying it’s right, but I’m also not 100% sure that I think it discounts all of his accomplishments.
But, when you lie, vehemently, and try to make everyone else look deceitful and crazy, there, I draw the line.
I know most people would draw the line at cheating. So, I’m not sure what this says about me. I suppose I’m just being honest.
I suppose, the way I see it, Lance involved himself in a ridiculous, underhanded, scheme that gave him an advantage. However, so did a TON of other people. Look no further than the investigation and you have to disqualify almost all of Team USA. That doesn’t make it right. But, it does make it more likely that someone will cheat.
For example, I was in an honors English class in high school. We were in a later period of the day from the other English classes. Every week there was a vocabulary quiz. The students in the earlier honors class would give the answers to our later class. When I was offered the answers, I didn’t want to take them. But, I also didn’t want to have a lower grade because everyone else in the class had them. So, I took them. That’s what I mean about a level playing field. If Joe Schmo is doing it and I have to compete against him, I want them.
Now, let’s say someone in my English class was found out for having the answers. In order to save himself, he turns the rest of the class in. He calls us out. What I would NOT do is say, “He’s a crazy a-hole. I never cheated. You’re gonna believe that guy? He’s a loser in every way.” If you are caught cheating, you have to own it. A good person faces the consequences. A sh*tty person deflects.
Everyone f*cks up. But, I have no sympathy for people who blame their own crisis on the character of others. I have no sympathy for people who will throw another person under the bus to save their own ass.
I don’t know. What do you think? Tell me all about your Lance theory. I’m dying to know. ;)
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