Article Critique – “Armstrong Gets Dumped” –
“Armstrong Gets Dumped” is an article in The Wall Street Journal of Thursday, October 18, 2012, by Shelly Banjo. The article is a reporting on the implications of the doping scandal of Lance Armstrong, a popular road-racing cyclist, who is known for winning seven consecutive times the Tour de France between 1999 and 2005. He also is a survivor of testicular cancer, an aspect that inspired him to establish a cancer foundation. The US-Anti Doping Agency (USADA) finds him guilty of doping, and different measures are placed against him, the greatest being banning him from future participation in cycling sport. In this essay, I will provide a critique to this article, addressing the issue of doping, its impact on business, and the best way to address this problem.
This article gives a reader an insight into Armstrong’s doping scandal. It shows how this issue began, and its final implications, which leave Armstrong in negative light. Most importantly, the US-Anti Doping Agency (USADA) declares Armstrong guilty of doping, based on a 200-page report with intensive details, which point to fact that Armstrong ran a complex doping operation. It is decided that he is a drug cheat when he fails to defend himself against these allegations. What follows is the stripping off all his seven Tour de France wins. Different organizations he collaborated with deny him and promise to cut business relations with him. For example, Nike terminates his contract abruptly, while some cycling chiefs from International Cycling Union (UCI) require Armstrong to repay all the prize money from the stripped winnings from 1998-2005, and he resigns as the chairperson of Livestrong, his cancer foundation (“The Wall Street Journal”).
In this article, the author takes a neutral stand, as she neither supports nor condemns any of the parties involved in this whole issue. The author only reports on the facts as they are, and does not give personal opinion on the overall issue. This is a commendable approach, essential in reporting, for bias avoidance.
Armstrong’s doping scandal raises many concerns in the cycling sport, as doping is mentioned as a trend among some cyclists. Nonetheless, doping, according to the World Anti-Doping Agency is illegal. One of the reasons is that it adversely affects the health of the involved athletes, and is considered cheating in sport (Porterfield, 2007). Therefore, pointing out and investigating Armstrong by USADA for this practice is in order. However, the measures taken against him, as well as the kind of publication of the evidence adopted cast a doubt on the presentational procedure employed. This kind of publicity may influence the cycling sport in the wrong light (Rigozzi, Kaufmann-Kohler & Malinverni, 2003). A number of criticisms raised on this issue point out that the sanctions taken against Armstrong violated the US anti-doping law, and most sport law experts consider them extreme (“NDTV SPORTS”). According to the “Herald Sun,” reviews are underway in the manner this issue was handled .
Conclusively, this article indirectly brings out the importance of integrity and upholding of ethics in whatever kind of business or work environment one is in. Lack of integrity by Armstrong has earned him a bad reputation, causing his business partners to lose trust in him and cut business links with him. Nonethelesss, doping is illegal and governments could enforce the anti-doping laws by changing current strategies to more effective ones.
“Herald Sun” (n.d). Federal Sports Minister announces review in wake of Lance Armstrong scandal. Retrieved from http://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/more-sport/federal-sports-minister-announces-review-in-wake-of-lance-armstrong-scandal/story-e6frfglf-1226512244609
“NDTV SPORTS.” (n.d). Lance Armstrong ban flouted anti-doping law: Experts. Retrieved from http://sports.ndtv.com/othersports/cycling/item/198695-lance-armstrong-ban-flouted-anti-doping-law-experts.
“The Wall Street Journal.” (n.d). Lance Armstrong Gets Dumped. Retrieved from http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444868204578062313532317222.html
Porterfield, J. (2007). Doping: Athletes and Drugs. The Rosen Publishing Group.
Rigozzi, A., Kaufmann-Kohler, G., & Malinverni, G. (2003). Doping and fundamental rights of athletes: comments in the wake of the adoption of the world anti-doping code. I.S.L.R 3, Sweet & Maxwell Limited.
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