Who Cares If Lance Armstrong Confesses?

Patrick,

Is it possible to answer all of your question with a simple "I don't care" or "What, do you want me to talk about Lindsay Lohan's latest drug bust too?" Or maybe a discussion of whether Mark McGwire used steroids?

You see, Lance Armstrong the meme appears to have become the nightmare scenario: a story that lives on just by virtue of having existed before. Seriously, what's left to uncover at this point? Short of a full confession (and like you, I don't see that happening), why should we care about whatever sad story Lance tells the world from Oprah's couch? What, exactly, is the societal benefit of beating the 10-times-dead horse that is this godforsaken story?

There's nothing to see here anymore, folks. We're all gawking at the chalk outline of a story.

If this were all in furtherance of a real discussion about PEDs in sports, what "performance-enhancing" really means, and how to reform the system to make it a little bit less like West Baltimore in The Wire, that would be a discussion worth having. But that's not what's happening here. The vast majority of the Armstrong coverage is a combination of celebrity rubbernecking (watching and dissecting every moment of a famous person's fall from grace) and the gleeful vengeance of fans and media members still outraged by It's Not About The Bike, the people who believe Lance perpetrated a fraud on the public and is getting his just comeuppance. Lather that sentiment in "we need the truth" sanctimony all you want, but it's what is truly at the bottom of this increasingly sleazy Armstrong saga.

There are real, interesting stories in sports this week. The NHL is finally getting a collective bargaining agreement done, while Peyton Manning is preparing to start a home playoff game a year after everyone thought his career was over. If you need sleaze and TMZ intrigue, even the Lakers' current dysfunction is a more relevant sports topic than Lance, as is the conundrum facing the Baseball Hall of Fame for the next decade as all the Steroid Era-greats become eligible. I say it's time to shut the door on Lance Armstrong, media topic, once and for all. Hate him, love him—I don't care. There's nothing to see here anymore, folks. We're all gawking at the chalk outline of a story.

Agree or disagree, Hampton?

–Jake

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Patrick Hruby, Jake Simpson, and Hampton Stevens 

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