The real victims of doping in sports. Who are they? Apparently, me!
Got a letter in the mail today from the FBI, yeah, the organization Mulder & Scully work for. They say that I’ve been identified as a victim of a possible crime. They don’t say what the crime was, probably because it’s not politically-correct to tell people they’re stupid. But yes, I did indeed contribute to the Floyd Fairness Fund. I was duped. By a guy who wears baseball caps backward (and I swear, I’ve never even watched a NASCAR race on TV!).
For some context, here’s a link to the web page describing my 2006 Tour de France experience, including the day Floyd flew up the mountain powered by testosterone. And later, when it was revealed Floyd failed a doping control, I wrote this. I was pretty naïve at the time!
07/28/06- CATCHING A DOLPHIN IN A TUNA NET? I was there, I saw both Floyd’s spectacular failure and next-day’s resurrection to claim victory in one of the world’s greatest sporting events.
And now? Everything is eclipsed by allegations of doping, due to a positive test for unusual ratios of two types of testosterone.
So everywhere you go, whether it be network news or talk radio, the story is all about Floyd Landis. Which is fine, it is a huge story. But an even bigger story may be, could be, that Floyd is, in fact, innocent. Caught up in the rabid (and necessary) zeal to catch cheaters.
But what, exactly, am I all riled up about? How about KCBS this morning airing the news conference (in which Landis proclaims his innocence and the steps he’ll go to to prove it), which was followed by not one second about the possibility that he could be speaking the truth, but instead a sports psychologist talking about why athletes cheat. How they deceive themselves etc. They’re using his protestation of innocence as evidence against him!
Floyd may very well be an innocent dolphin caught by people fishing for tuna. People whose driving ambition to achieve their goal over-rides the possibility that somebody innocent could get caught in the net & killed. Yes, drug usage among top athletes is a severe problem. But this is a story that has more than one angle. Floyd Landis could be guilty, and I’ll feel very betrayed if that’s the case. But his trial & conviction in the media is absurd.
Please, won’t somebody of stature, an athlete, a news reporter, point out that there could be an even-bigger story here- the possibility that we’ve gone too far and caught a dolphin in the net? Instead of repeating the same sound bites over and over and over… talking about how much of a problem there is in professional cycling, that this is evidence they’re getting a handle on it, and that both his heroic comeback and protestation of innocence are proof that he’s guilty? –Mike–
May 18, 2007, was the day I stopped believing in Floyd Landis. The day Floyd’s friend made a call to Greg LeMond, claiming to be an uncle who had abused him. The phone call was made in Floyd’s presence. Floyd lost every last bit of credibility with me on that day. That was the day I knew Floyd had cheated. I didn’t yet know that everybody cheated. That would take a few more years.