I do understand why Lance Armstrong was punished so severely for his part in the organization of one of the largest doping rings in the history of professional sports. Did he really create an unfair advantage? All of these cyclists are coming forward saying, “Yeah, I got dope from Armstrong.” So how did he create an unfair advantage if almost every single athlete in the sport was doing it?

How can they take away his seven Tour de France titles if they don’t have anyone to give them to? I bet if they went down that list and checked off every single athlete that was doping and taking part in these elaborate blood transfusions, there wouldn’t be anyone left to hand those titles down to.

The real concern for Tour de France organizing officials should be concerning how this event can even continue. With these recent discoveries, the last ten years of the sport have pretty much been nullified. Many sports have gone through rough patches, but I don’t think there’s ever been a sport that has literally had to discount at least seven years.

I’m still amazed by Lance Armstrong’s amazing legacy. And I don’t understand how any human being can say that what he did wasn’t amazing. The guy had cancer. Yes, he may have been doping in order to compete. But everyone was doing it at the time. He wasn’t carrying any form of unfair advantage. If anything, he was carrying a huge disadvantage.

Yes, what he did was wrong. But we’ve already pulled his sponsorship with Nike, made him resign as the CEO of HIS company (Livestrong) and taken away his seven Tour de France titles. At the end of the day, we all make mistakes. One thing we don’t all do is win seven Tour de France titles after recovering from cancer.


Michelle Berthiaume can be contacted at


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