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News Opinion Readers Respond

Forget Armstrong, hop on a bike instead

Despite the Shakespearean rhetoric of Michael Hill's recent commentary ("Fans crave what cheating provides," Jan. 25), no quarter should be granted to Lance Armstrong who, for over a decade, willfully and systematically lied, cheated, and thumbed his nose at the basic tenets of ethical human behavior.

Unfortunately, Mr. Hill's commentary promulgates the message of our country's increasingly influential sports and entertainment consortium which suggests that the primary role for the masses is to watch and entertained by a small troop of elite athletes. Certainly, Theodore Roosevelt is cringing in his grave to know that in today's America the value of the common man is to be found not in the ring, but in the stands.

Sports should be fun, teach us life's lessons, build self-esteem and provide an opportunity to interact with people from many walks of life. We should all spend a little more time on our own bikes and much less time being concerned with Mr. Armstrong. Take the kids out for a ride, enter a local race, pledge to drop a few pounds. When possible, our sports focus should be on our own participation and that of our families, friends, and community — not in the naive co-opting of the flawed achievements of yet another misguided celebrity.

Dr. Richard Hinton, Baltimore

The writer is a sports orthopaedic surgeon and researcher.

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