Lance Armstrong was accused of taking drugs by the U.S Anti-Doping Agency in the 2012 Tour de France. Armstrong denied the charges August 23, Armstrong dropped his counter-suit. (Image by: Kassarah Bivens/September 4, 2012)
Hell. That is all that can be said of chemotherapy.
Your body goes from your temple and refuge to your prison cell and place of torture.
All you have is your mind, hope, determination, and mental strength. Those are the basic necessities that get you through treatment. During treatment you have dreams and hopes. A hope that one day you will be able to have a family, run a business, or make a difference. A dream that one-day, the world will know your name for the good that you have done for society.
For Lance Armstrong, that was what kept him going. The hope that one day, a dream could be accomplished and a difference would be made.
In 1996 Lance Armstrong, born Lance Gunderson, was diagnosed with stage three testicular cancer. He suffered through three months of rigorous treatment. He, like any other cancer patient, had his body put through hell. He was poked, prodded, and had his testicles removed. His world was thrown up in the air and upside down. Now while he had been racing on the cycling scene since 1991, his career did not gain traction until after 1996.
Over the course of his cycling career, Armstrong acquired many road race wins, records, his most notable cycling feat being seven Tour de France wins, the cycling world’s most prestigious win.
After seven years of retirement, Armstrong returned to the world of cycling to finish within the top three of the general classification of the 2009 Tour de France.
Outside of his professional cycling career, Armstrong is an active member of the philanthropic community. Following his battle against cancer, Armstrong established the Lance Armstrong Foundation in 1997 with the help of his mother.
Through the LAF, Armstrong helps raise millions of dollars through fundraisers called Ride for the Roses Weekend. In 2007, he campaigned for a Texas State Assembly bill that supported tax funds go to cancer research, which eventually passed.
Now, during the 2012 Tour de France the U.S Anti-Doping Agency brought up charges against Armstrong, not the only time that some agency has brought charges of doping against him for his undefeated seven time Tour de France wins.
As usual, Armstrong responded by denying the charges, but ultimately on August 23, Armstrong dropped his counter-suit against the USADA with the USADA announcing several minutes later that they would be stripping Armstrong of all his cycling wins, and banning him for the sport of cycling for life.
To have your integrity and character questioned once is one thing, but to have it repeatedly questioned is humiliating and degrading. To have your reputation drug through the mud, year after year, is wrong.
Then to have all of your success stripped, your reputation irrevocably tarnished as well as being banned from the sport that you love, is absolutely and terribly wrong, if not disrespectful, especially if you have become a huge inspiration to thousands.
The USADA’s actions are wrong. What they must understand is that once one has their body put through hell; you would never go and violate your body with drugs and other substances that could potentially harm your body.
It is purely outrageous that the USADA would threaten to use teammate testimony against Armstrong when they were disgruntled because they themselves were thrown out of the sport for doping.
When you are the idol to many, for all the good that you have done, and the success you have accomplished, to have your titles stripped from you is degrading. That is what this entire situation is for Armstrong, degrading.