Can I play devil’s advocate a second?
What if Lance Armstrong had gone on Oprah and said something along the lines of:
“You know what? All of you can eat my well-toned ass.
“Oprah, have you ever gotten plastic surgery? Have you ever had Botox injections? Have you ever used a scientific method to enhance yourself in order to excel or stay on top of your profession?
“And what about when Kobe Bryant goes to Europe to get weird injections into his knees? Or Steve Nash goes on his super-diet and yoga regime to keep his body in peak condition? Is any of that performance-enhancing? If you’re a baseball player wearing contacts is that performance-enhancing? Half the NBA and NFL play their games stoned on marijuana—where does that fit into your assessment of drugs in sports? You realize that blood-doping operates in the same way as when cyclists go and train in high-altitude locations like Colorado? Yet one is legal and the other is the devil’s elixir.
“And by the way, just so we’re clear, the way in which I cheated still involved actually beating the shit out of a bunch of other blood-doping cyclists. It’s not like I got rides up those French mountains, I still had to go out and actually win the goddamn races. It’s the whole baseball-steroids debate, I know, but hey, if any of you sorry pricks can go out and hit 70-plus home runs on HGH, by all means, be my guest.
“Oh, and while I was doing this horrible, horrible thing, I also started a cancer charity that raised $500 million to help people who aren’t cheating cyclists. And can you believe that some people have their heads so far up their own asses that they want their money back? Just for the record, that money doesn’t go to keeping my remaining nut cancer-free but to the 28 million people living with cancer worldwide. Let me repeat that: They want their money back from a cancer charity because the guy who started the charity artificially increased the oxygen in his blood. And I’m the asshole. Right.
“And sure, maybe I lied, but have any of you people even taken a glance at our society for a moment? We fought a war on a lie; banks, mortgage companies, and homeowners lied our way into an economic meltdown; fossil fuel companies are in the midst of perpetuating countless lies while the world burns; oh, and the media constantly tells us the lie that sports actually matter in this melodramatic life-and-death way, and we should all freak the f*** out when even the most minor intransigence comes to light and beg you, Oprah, for forgiveness like this isn’t all a silly charade.
“Oh, and by the way? I’m still rich as shit, handsome as all hell, I hang out with Matthew McConaughey, and after this horseshit, I’ll keep donating gobs of money to charity, hire a publicist to go out and remake my image, and die fatter and happier than any of you morose puritan losers.
“Mic drop. Armstrong out.”