Livestrong. A motto, an idea, a state of mind, a lifestyle. Say it, see it, read it, any way you chose to look at it you cannot deny the hope and inspiration it has brought to many individuals and families. The man behind it is a hero to the many people that have benefited from it's success. Yet at the same time this man has also become a villain in the eyes of just as many people. In the eyes of many could be Robin Hood while in others he could be Pablo Escobar. I realize that the differences between a PED user, a thief and a mass-murdering drug lord are pretty significant but I am not comparing crimes or personalities. The philosophies of these men however may not be so different.
Lance Armstrong has admitted to making a mistake. A mistake that has cost him his Tour de France titles, endorsement deals, but more than anything his word and reputation. Many still praise the man while others ridicule him. How can a person that has done so much for the study and research of cancer be so harshly criticized? Should a person's crime and deceit towards so many be ignored because of their philanthropy? These are some critical questions to think about and may not be so easy to answer. Perhaps a couple of historical figures will help out in the matter. Robin Hood, a figure of folklore, better known for stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. Clearly stealing is a crime and Robin Hood is a thief but he is celebrated as a hero because he helps out those poor and needy families around him. Pablo Escobar, mass-murdering drug lord, loved and hated by the people of Colombia. The man terrorized the country for years but at the same time was mourned by millions who were witnesses of his great deeds and charities to those less fortunate and ill citizens. Lance Armstrong knowingly took PED's and his use was for several years. He cheated the sport. He lied to the world. He defamed many of his teammates and colleagues. He also created a foundation that has raised millions of dollars to research and battle cancer. Was his use of PED's solely to win yellow jackets or was he thinking of the many people he could inspire and help with his cycling success? Only Lance knows the answer to that question, we can only speculate. Only goes to show that there is a thin line between doing right and doing wrong. PED's are a far cry from being a thief and even further away from being a murderer but they are still illegal and users are still breaking laws.
The bottom line is that Lance Armstrong cheated a sport and he has and will be dealt with by the proper authorities and although his foundation was built on a lie we cannot take away the hope, inspiration and health is has provided to so many. We are all quick to give our opinions on matters like these but it's human nature. Who's right and who's wrong? Nobody knows. We all have a voice, we all have an opinion and we all live life in our own unique way. We all have our goals in life and deep down we all wish to help others. Some of us have the means to help and are charitable, other do not have such means so in order to live strong they may find it necessary to live wrong.