Lance Armstrong's Confession Doesn't Make Him a Role Model But It Makes Him Human

Mom Moment 22

oprah lance armstrongRight about now, most parents are probably crossing Lance Armstrong's name off the list of Good Role Models for the Kids. After all, he lied (and lied and lied and lied). He used banned substances. He did a whole bunch of stuff wrong. So that means we switch him over to the Bad Influence list, right?

Well, maybe not. He's finally telling the truth: He made big mistakes, and he made them all by himself. Nobody forced him. As he told Oprah in tonight's long-awaited exclusive interview, "All the fault lies on me." That's not an easy thing to admit. Still, does he deserve any credit for 'fessing up?

I think so. But "honesty is the best policy" isn't the main lesson I want my kids to learn from Armstrong's story. I would rather have my kids look at the disgraced athlete as an example of why we, as a society, shouldn't be making professional athletes (not to mention actors or musicians or models or politicians) "role models" in the first place. People are people, no matter how rich, successful or talented they might be -- people are not superheroes. Building any human being up to such great heights is completely unfair to everyone involved: They will fail and we will be disappointed.

I want my kids to believe in themselves, in their own limitless potential. But I also want them to accept themselves as human. Flawed. Real. To pretend otherwise is the real mistake.

What will you tell your kids about Lance Armstrong's confession?


Image via OWN

news, cycling, scandal


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missy... missybest

Do we now consider lying, cheating, doping, and deceiving a "mistake?"  I have had enough of excuses!  These are mistakes, these are serious character flaws.  Did you see the interview?  He is still hiding something.  This man has serious issues.   He harmed other people's lives and livelihoods.  This man is sick and he still doesn't get it.

When we stop expecting, yes expecting honesty and integrity from ourselves and other people, we, as American might as well hang it up!  Our country will not survive the number of people who use, abuse, destroy.  Awful!  Human, yes!  But, a serious human problem is what Lance Armstrong is.  My sympathies to his children!

Nycti... Nyctimene

Nope, sorry.

He let his entire team basically take the fall while distancing himself as the 'honest poster boy' for cycling. He lied and profited and lied and lied and lied and insisted that everyone trying to get him removed was somehow evil and out to get him. Now just because he finally admits what the world already knows he's still a role model, a good guy? Uh, no. He's a jerk.

Bernie Madoff admitted what he did in the end too. Guess he should be a role model and get a pass too, huh?

Lance had a choice and he made very bad ones every step of the way. Admitting something that everyone knows doesn't negate the selfishness and downright evilness of those choices.

wamom223 wamom223

I defended him and now to know the truth....I don't even know what to say.  It not just that he cheated, he ruined lives and I feel guilty that I ever believed him. 

nonmember avatar Gina

Doing really shouldn't matter. Lance Armstrong still worked very hard to win those titles. You could dope me and I still couldn't run a mile. People, leave him and other athletes alone. Why is it a beauty quen can have fake boobs, Botox (doping enhancements), etc and that's ok. Double standards. I still admire the athletes that have won Tour de France, hit home runs , run races, etc. I dare anyone to try doping and see what you can do. If you don't eat right, work out excessively and dedicate yourself to the sport - guess what. You're not going to be victorious.

Nycti... Nyctimene

Gina, then what's the point of sports at all? Lets force all atheletes to dope and competitions will all just be about who dopes the most. Doping has serious effects and athletes who dope have been proven time and time again to be able to train longer because of it (thus becoming stronger/faster) unfairly than the athletes who do it naturally.

It's like body-building. Where's the fun and inspiration in some jerk who jabs himself with steroids to bulk up? I want to see the guys (and/or girls) who dedicate themselves naturally and work their butts off for every inch of muscle that they have. Same with cycling.

Especially if we're then going to call these people role models. Where's the role model-ship in being a dishonest, cheating doper who thinks the rules aren't for them but are for everyone else? I don't view doping as any different than doing meth or heroin. I don't want meth-heads getting paid and put on posters in kids bedrooms as something to aspire to and I don't see people like Lance as any different.

Sports should be about honesty and positivity. People who live good, honest lives and follow the rules and work hard. Not about who can dope the most, cheat the best, cover up the most just to make the most money.

nonmember avatar zach

I'm just glad he had the ball to finally 'fess up. LOL

nonmember avatar Bohemia Styles

This is the guy who berated, threatened, intimated and screamed at anyone over the past decade who dared to suggest that he doped. His denials were indignant and even threatening. He staged this 'confession' to manipulate the emotions of the public in his favor because he wants to compete again (as a triathlete). He never said he was sorry for all the wrongs he did. There could be a case for contrition if he gave up all of his ill-gotten gains.

nonmember avatar Michelle

Human? Sure. But 13 YEARS of this? We all screw up and make bad decisions in our lives. What would make him HUMAN, and a good role model, is whether or not he sincerely regrets what he did. Does he? Hard to say. But oh oh word: KARMA :)

nonmember avatar Dahlia

Lance Armstrong is a lying, cheating, narcissist and sociopath who viciously and callously ruined the lives of many decent people all in the service of his ego and avarice. He's only coming clean now because he can no longer deny it in the face of all the evidence, and he STILL clearly isn't remorseful about any of it. He's only doing this because he hopes to salvage some sort of career; perhaps write a book or become a commentator. So, no. No credit.

DebaLa DebaLa

Your take on this is... bizarre. And for a parent, very disturbing. 
He took his deceipt to levels unseen before. I always believed he doped, but didn't care. But as with our achetype model Watergate: it isn't the deed, it's the cover-up after and the unrepentant commitment to it. That wreaks untolled damage and makes the difference here.

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