General chatter - I feel so bad about Marion Jones

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10-05-2007, 07:56 PM
It is just such a shame when someone so promising and so excellent turns out to have made such bad decisions. How disappointing for everyone, and how terrible she must feel.


10-05-2007, 08:16 PM
Break the law and get caught, you gotta pay, I don't feel sorry for her at all.

10-05-2007, 08:43 PM
Yes, I agree she must pay the price, but I think what Jay was trying to say is that she was a great athlete before the bad decision to take drugs and the bad decision to lie about it, etc.

It really is a shame and I'm sure she never began her career thinking/wanting it would lead to this. Very sad, indeed.

It's kind of how I feel about some politicians in that I don't believe they start out corrupt and that most people honestly go into that to make a difference, but some (and I say some, not all! ;) ) get sucked into the "dark side". It's a shame when those types of things happen. Because when the trust is gone, it's hard to get it back.

(And I correlate those two since the "dark side" is a win at all cost attitude, ya know?)

10-05-2007, 08:49 PM
I feel sorry because it is such a waste. I don't mean she shouldn't pay the price. It's just so disappointing!

I feel the same way about all the drama at the Tour de France. I just won't watch that any more because the whole sport is called into question.


10-05-2007, 09:19 PM
JayEll, thank you for the post. You said it well. I hate to see such a role model discredited. ( (I will save the title "hero" for someone who risks/gives his or her life for a reason...not for athletes) And I find it fascinating how sincere her denials were. *sigh I really think we all have it in us, that art of self-deception...she was so sincere, I felt she believed the point now, I can't believe it. I just shake my head.

And I share your sorrow over the Tour de France. After Lance, the world's greatest athlete, and such achievement, I was ready for another American role model in that great sport....I stoically defended Floyd Landis ...thought it impossible......still am surprised......probably most surprised that anything known to man could cause such a boost!!!

Amyster, I appreciated your wisdom as was just...well...wise... we all want "heros" role models...and especially in politicians......I shudder at how much pain we will all have to feel to finally just say "enough" and demand
truth from our politicians....*shudder

10-05-2007, 10:32 PM
I personally feel bad that Ms Jones chose to fib about her use of performance-enhancing drugs. I also feel bad that she used them. BUT, here's another point of view:
To get to the elite athlete level and WIN, you need to be on a level playing-field. I personally think that pretty much ALL of the top athletes, especially in track and field and cycling today are using performance-enhancing drugs. Just because you don't test positive doesn't mean you are competing "clean". You just haven't been tested for the specific substance that you are using. For example, if I take HGH, but am tested for testosterone, my test will be negative. But I am still using a substance. In this day and age of designer drugs, it may very well be impossible to test for everything. I am convinced that the top track stars of today are all using something. But does the general public bear any responsiblility? We all love the "winners". We all want to be "number one". But we are "shocked" at what it takes this day and age to get there. We all have the ideal that absolutely super-human feats of speed, strength, and endurance are obtainable naturally. But are they? Should we judge Ms. Jones harshly for trying to compete with the others on a level playing field? Is it possible to HAVE a level playing field? Should we throw in the towel and have an "anything goes" attitude? And does the multi-million dollar payoff for a gold medal athlete have anything to do with the athlete's drive to reach the top? Does the public's adulation of only those who reach gold fuel the fire? And is it hypocritical of us to reward individuals who break the physical laws of natural performance yet sit in judgment when this is possible only through the use of chemical assistants????

10-06-2007, 10:05 AM
Very interesting points, freiamaya. Certainly the push for "winners" does make the use of performance enhancing drugs very attractive--possibly necessary? But what does that say about the culture? :(

What is a performance enhancing drug, anyway? Sometimes it's not so easy to say. Caffeine enhances metabolism--but its use is widespread in the population, so it's hardly considered a 'drug.' But of course steroids are a different matter. The sad thing is, we'll never know for sure whether Floyd Landis used artifical testosterone or not. I would not put it past the French to tamper with the samples or the results in some way.

I think it takes a special type of individual to play it clean--knowing that they may lose out to those who are cheating. Namely, an individual who is highly ethical!


10-06-2007, 01:02 PM
Unfortunately, that highly ethical individual would probably not make it into the top echelons of elite athletes. It take money to get there, and to get money and athlete has to win a lot or win a few times and be highly photogenic.

I'm terribly disappointed at the realities of how Marion Jones continued winning. She was sinning before the performance enhancing drugs, but the playing field will never be level, and to continue to win she (or her coach) felt it was necessary.

Although technology and new knowledge about specific training techniques has vastly improved athletic performance, records cannot continually be broken forever without chemical help. The human body doesn't evolve- it adapts. Likewise drug designers have adapted just as quickly to stay slightly ahead of the testing.


10-06-2007, 01:31 PM
I'm honestly not surprised when I hear revelations of some athletes taking drugs. In this day and age, you just expect it. However, it's really a sad commetary on our society when we have gotten it down to this level. My mother is always telling me how it's not fair that athletes get paid so much money while the hard working folks, some who must risk their lives, get paid so little. When we stop praising and elevating these sports to unreasonable levels, some might even say to the point of idolizing it, then we might get our society back on the road to repair.

10-06-2007, 02:00 PM
I saw her on the telly this morning and honestly I didn't feel sorry for her. They also showed all the interviews where she looked them straight in the eye and said if I had taken any drugs the tests would have shown that. Down fall of a hero...umm, she brought it upon herself. At least she was man enough to admit it.

10-06-2007, 02:33 PM
The other really interesting question to consider is that of public funding for athletes. Athletes are funded if and only if (in general) they are in a sport and are expected to excel. Government subsidies are few and far between to assist those who are, say, 25th in the world in luge, or who are 47th in the world in archery, or even 12th overall in the 50-m sprint. Funding is based on the potential placement of the athlete and the profile of the sport. There is so much at stake for the top ten sprinters in terms of funding to actually train for the Olympics. And the payoff if you get a Gold medal is enormous. Wheaties boxes, Adidas endorsements, and promotional appearances are few and far between for the numbers 2,3 and 4 in the sport (look at Nancy Kerrigan, for example...). And even to GET to this level usually means a college scholarship. Which means that the pressure to be number one starts around middle school -- you have to excel in order to get noticed, hopefully to be scouted for a top athletic high school, where you want to excel so that you will be scouted for a top athletic college, in order to compete at the appropriate levels that prepare you for international competition and ultimately the Olympics. With the number of substances available through trainers and gyms and "mentors", it is NO WONDER that most of these athletes are on the chemical path at the age of 15 or 16 (Marion Jones had her first inquiry when she was in high school...).
I fear the days of pure sport with the pursuit of natural excellence at the top of natural physiological performance, removed from politics and money, are long, long gone, if they ever existed in the first place...

10-06-2007, 03:01 PM
Honestly, I was saddened by the fact that she was a WOMAN representing America. Whether or not she knew about the substance (instead of her claims that her coach said it was only "flaxseed oil" initially, none of us could ever be sure). Something that seemed so impossibly true apparently isn't after all. This isn't the pessimist in me speaking, but I think surrendering all her medals back to the Olympic Council is enough damage to her already. I wonder if the sport comanies will start lawsuits after she's had quite a number of endorsement dollars....

I'm crossing my fingers that Apollo Anton Ohno will never have to disappoint me.

10-06-2007, 03:30 PM
There is no doubt in my mind that when an athlete of such a caliber, who has to be by definition obsessed with what is and isn't going into one's body with respect to diet and nutrition, and sticks to a rigid training plan, and KNOWS the consequences of his/her actions, absolutely without a DOUBT knew what was going on. If she wants us to believe that she would rigorously count calories, fat grams, protein, supplements, avoid cold medications and those substances that would show up on a drug test, get randomly tested, etc., would take someone's word that the material being INJECTED into her body was "natural" and didn't know what was going on is LUDICROUS. To paraphrase Judge Judy, "if it doesn't make sense, it didn't happen!". There is absolutely NOTHING at stake for the mentors/doctors etc. There IS a huge amount at stake for the competitor. She knew what was going on -- at the very least, she had the obligation and responsibility to know what was going on. She knew and she lied. Nothing else makes sense...

10-06-2007, 03:37 PM
Veggielover, I hope the same about Apollo Ohno! that would be terrible.


10-06-2007, 04:09 PM
... absolutely without a DOUBT knew what was going on. If she wants us to believe that she would rigorously count calories, fat grams, protein, supplements, avoid cold medications and those substances that would show up on a drug test, get randomly tested, etc., would take someone's word that the material being INJECTED into her body was "natural" and didn't know what was going on is LUDICROUS. ...... She knew and she lied. Nothing else makes sense...

You know, I don't know WHAT made me so so saddened about this- it was either sympathy at the first notice when I saw her crying on TV. Maybe I honestly WANTED to believe that she just DIDn't know, that her coach just tricked her. But you're right... you are right. I've seen athletes in training calculate their calories like nutjobs and protein and carb intake and having the coach "slip a little clear substance under the tongue" and not know what it is or even ask twice- it doesn't seem to be very consistent with the controllable nature of training nutrition. I was reading that Lance calculated his calories to be 6660 calories for each day while in the Tour de france, making sure the carb and protein ratio was exactly the same.... I guess for a moment I just wanted it to be real. Her mom and her family was there to comfort her, but miss Marion's got so much loss right now I just can't help but to feel sorry for her...

Veggielover, I hope the same about Apollo Ohno! that would be terrible.


I'd be crushed!!! All that controversy on the multi-medal stars, and the multiple winners and such.... I mean, I don't know if anyone saw the "bustin' my A__" poster from Lance Armstrong after his 5th tour de france, but I personally was so proud that an American could do this sans substance. Nowadays its almost as if a player wins multiple times, they're under terrible scrutiny. It's like the public thinks you cheat because you can't possibly be THAT good. I think that while Marion's mistake may be positive in the way that it could discourage future competitors to use drugs, I also think that now they're going to be really really hard on the winners and give 'em ****. Kinda like, guilty until proven innocent!

10-06-2007, 08:43 PM
I'm crossing my fingers that Apollo Anton Ohno will never have to disappoint me.

Veggielover, I hope the same about Apollo Ohno! that would be terrible.


I think he will be long as Jullianne is his partner.

10-06-2007, 09:12 PM
I think he will be long as Jullianne is his partner.


I wonder if Dancing with the Stars do a drug screening!!!

10-07-2007, 12:36 AM
Apollo's DREAMY!!! sigh....
I think Lance Armstrong did his Tour de France clean. I really do. I read a really interesting article on him that came out in Outside magazine about 8 years before he was anybody -- just another up-and-comer on the circuit. He had undergone medical testing to determine his biological potential, and through muscle core sample examination and through his lung capacity exam, the MDs were absolutely astounded. With respect to his muscle fibers, he has way, way BETTER than the ideal ratio fast-twitch to slow-twitch fibers, meaning that his endurance, recovery, lactic acid production and all that is far far superior to anyone that the sports MDs had ever seen before. His lung capacity too was absolutely unbelievable. These tests are for things that are genetically produced. You can't change your muscle fiber ratio through drugs, nor your inherent lung capacity. You are either born with it or you aren't. It was so amazing that the MDs felt he was a "genetic freak" -- that one-in-100 million person who biologically was more than perfectly created for cycling. They put it like this --If you think of his physical perfection like you would consider eyesight, you know that perfect vision is 20/20. Eagle eye vision is 40/20. Lance Armstrong has 400/20 vision. Wrap your head around THAT one! They had never seen anything like it before. I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt for sure. With his genetic gifts, he has no need for chemical assistance, and is probably the only one EVER in the entire history of cycling to be so fortunate...