In the wake of Lance Armstrong’s Earth shattering confession (that’s sarcasm folks). I have to wonder are we so different from the Roman mob? Are we not entertained? The fact is Armstrong built a better mousetrap. We knew, or should have known when the cycling world began wailing and gnashing its teeth over his success, that a) he was using performance enhancing drugs and b) 90% of the profession was as well and didn’t like being so thoroughly bested.
Armstrong made two fatal errors. He was TOO good at the game and he was an arrogant asshole. He laughed in the face of regulatory agencies who couldn’t catch him. He wore his crown of laurel with style, and he didn’t share the stage with his whistle blowing accomplices and fellow cheaters, let’s not forget that fact. And WE, the Mob….didn’t care…until he got caught.
Baseball, football, hockey, Olympics, horse racing, boxing, golf and to an extent politics……all tainted by those who didn’t live up to our mythic heroic standards. And WE don’t care…..until they get caught. Every time we buy Doritos, Nike, or tune in to the Super Bowl, we say “Entertain me!” When we buy a ticket, a new hat, a team logo bumper sticker, place a two dollar bet, or cast a vote for the one giving us the best promises, we say “Entertain me!”
Why are we surprised when the gods and heroes behave as if the rules don’t apply? We created them. We gave them permission…until they get caught. Then, as the dust clears, we sit in our comfortable dens with Oprah, clutching our proverbial pearls, GASPING…”How dare you?”
Bitch please! Put the righteous indignation in the same drawer with the Livestrong bracelet and own the Mob’s role in corruption. We demand entertainment and appeasement. We don’t TRULY care how our heroes do it…until they get caught. If we did, it wouldn’t be so rampant, so unsurprising, and so profitable for them to cheat.
Bread and circuses.