I swore I wasn't going to comment on the Lance Armstrong doping situation but I just finished watched his three-hour interview with Oprah Winfrey and I have strong feelings I'd like to share.
Clearly, Armstrong is just beginning to process his psychological response to the collapse of his world and barely able to reflect on the events, his feelings, or his future. He was immune to Oprah's excellent probing style because (I'm guessing) he is basically a man of "action" rather than "reflection."
As he stated in the interview many times, he wants to "fix" the problem and it sure seems that "the problem" was "getting caught" not his own need to consciously cheat and lie.
But, rather than attack Lance Armstrong (he is exactly where he should be after a career of doping and lying and now coming "clean"), I just want to express my disappointment in Oprah for even running this interview for 3 hours.
She could have more profitably interviewed Armstrong for an hour and spent the rest of the time talking to other athletes that have had their careers lost over cheating and had time to process that experience. There are so many candidates for such a focus.
It's also important that we look at the wider picture with regard to doping in sports.
It isn't by accident that so many of our hero-athletes tend to have chemically-induced clay feet. Or that so many elected officials are caught in a web of lies.
Perhaps it is time to have Oprah address the larger question of why we as a society need to have stronger-than-human gladiators to entertain us and then are aghast that they engage in doping practices.
At least this is my feeling on a late January afternoon here in Central NJ, USA.
I'm curious what everyone else is thinking about this issue.
Judy Shepps Battle is a New Jersey resident, addictions specialist, consultant and freelance writer. Her weekly column "It Takes a Village" appeared in the South Brunswick Patch for a year. She can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information on this and other topics can be found at her website at http://www.writeaction.com/.
Copyright 2013 Judy Shepps Battle