I have a lot of angry friends. They are angry and disappointed, all painting a big, “HE’S A FUCKING ASSHOLE” sign over the name that once reigned high in the sport of cycling. That name that was synonymous to “beating the odds” and a”fighter”.
I’ve had friends who say that if people still defend him, they should go and get checked out by a shrink.
Maybe I should.
Because the fact is, I don’t defend what he did. I don’t condone the fact that he lied and doped. I despise lies as much as I despise what it can leave in its wake.
But the thing is this: there is a saying among my peeps that says, “Si te choca, te checas.” (If it pisses you off, check yourself.) If it really riles you up, it’s probably because you’ve done the same thing to someone else.
I watched part of Oprah’s interview but I knew beforehand that I didn’t need to see the whole 2.5 hours. I knew the scrutiny and the anger Lance Armstrong would be facing. I knew the backlash would flare like a dry country firestorm.
And I also knew he is a human being. I know that taking off that last shred of clothing, made of the years of lies, baring yourself naked before the criticism of the world, is something that those same friends of mine who hate him would think twice about doing with regards to themselves. It is something that would unravel even the hardest of souls and it has extinguished the happiest of spirits.
I am not anyone who can appoint herself judge, jury and executioner. I have no right. All I know is that I see a lot of people I know, in Lance.
And I feel sorry for them because they will never be made to take the spotlight in such a fashion and have themselves so exposed that they would wish they could believe in fairy tales and in the emperor’s new clothes and not have to confess to their 13 year-old son that yes, Daddy did lie. Don’t defend me anymore. Daddy is sorry.
Daddy is really sorry.