I Wish I Were In Paris

From war to peace and politics to gossip, if we have an opinion on something we'll share it here.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Marion Jones Is A Liar And A Cheat

I'm sure that everyone has heard this story a million times in the last day or two since it broke. Marion Jones is a liar and a cheat.

Track star Marion Jones pleads guilty to doping deception

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Track star Marion Jones pleaded guilty Friday to lying to a federal investigator about taking banned substances.

"It is with a great amount of shame that I stand before you and tell you I have betrayed your trust," she said outside the courthouse Friday.

"Making these false statements to federal agents was an incredibly stupid thing for me to do, and I am responsible fully for my actions."

She asked for forgiveness, adding that she understood that a simple apology "might not be enough and sufficient to address the pain and the hurt I have caused you."

"Because of my actions, I am retiring from the sport of track and field, a sport which I deeply love," she said.

Further, Jones said the example of her "wrong choices and bad decisions" would "be used to make the lives of many people improve."

Jones -- who had long vehemently denied taking steroids -- appeared in U.S. District Court in White Plains, New York, before Judge Kenneth Karas.

Jones, 31, told the court that her then coach, Trevor Graham, first gave her steroids in 1999, telling her it was flaxseed oil.

She said she took the steroid known as "the clear," or THG, from that time until 2001, covering her participation in the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

Graham has been indicted for allegedly lying to federal investigators. He has pleaded not guilty.

Federal sentencing guidelines suggest Jones could face jail time. She has been ordered back to court on January 11, 2008, for sentencing.

The admission could also cost her the five medals she won at the 2000 Olympic games in Sydney -- three of them gold.

Jones may not be the only one affected. The entire 4x400m women's relay team could lose their gold medals as a result.

The admission could also have a ripple effect throughout the sports world, particularly for the investigation into alleged doping by other high-profile athletes.

Federal officials have been investigating BALCO, a laboratory linked to "the clear," which The Washington Post reported Jones admitted using. BALCO has been at the center of a long-running professional sports steroid scandal, including allegations against baseball home run king Barry Bonds.

The International Olympic Committee said the information Jones provides "may prove to be key" in advancing its inquiry into how the BALCO case may have "affected Olympic Games' competitions."

"Progress to date has been slow due to difficulties in gathering findings," the IOC said.

Jones filed a $25 million defamation lawsuit against Victor Conte, founder of BALCO, in 2004. The lawsuit accused him of trying to "destroy her career and reputation" when he said he had supplied her with performance-enhancing drugs.

That lawsuit was settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.

In 2005, Conte pleaded guilty to conspiracy and money laundering.

The charges against Jones were reported by the Post on Thursday, which quoted a letter written by Jones that acknowledged two federal counts against her.

Jones wrote a letter to family and friends telling them she would be making the plea, the Post reported.

The Post said it was read a copy of the letter, and that Jones' husband, when reached by the Post, did not dispute the contents.

"Red flags should have been raised when [Trevor Graham] told me not to tell anyone about" the supplement program, the Post quoted the letter as saying.

The Post said Jones noted in her letter that after taking the substance, she noticed changes in how she felt and how she was able to recover from workouts.

The Post said Graham had no comment.

The guilty plea by Jones contradicted years of public, often angry denials. The woman considered one of the greatest female athletes in the world has sworn she's never taken a banned substance. "I'm an athlete that has always been drug free," she has said.

Jones apologized in her letter, the Post reported. "I am sorry for disappointing you all in so many ways," she wrote.

I'm not sure what I find more disgusting. Is it the fact that she lied about cheating, thinking that people were so stupid that they couldn't tell she was on something? Or, is it the fact that she portrayed herself as a role model for young children out there wanting to follow in her footsteps all the while knowing that she was on something? I would say that they're equally disgusting. But it's not quite true because she had children looking up to her. She had little girls wanting to be like her. And now, she's nothing but a fraud!! Imagine how those children are feeling right now!!

I do not feel sorry for her. She can cry all she wants about how she's sorry for lying. But no amount of tears or apologies will make up for what she has done. Because of her cheating, she may have cost her relay team members their medals. More importantly, she has cost them their dignity and respect. They will be forever known as the team members of a cheater. People will forever question whether they deserved to win or if they would have even won had it not been for her doping!!

Personally, I don't care what happens to her. If they strip her of her medals, records, and every other thing she has achieved, I couldn't care less. If they ban her for life from sports, I don't care. If they throw her in jail for lying to the feds, I don't care.

My outrage is not directed only at Marion Jones and what she did. My outrage extends to each and every athlete, be they professional or amateur, who is knowingly doping and lying about it. Marion Jones may be the story today. But there are plenty of "Marion's" out there that haven't been caught yet, and they may be the story tomorrow. If they can't play fair, they shouldn't play at all!! They are ruining it for those athletes who aren't doping, and they're costing the sports world a hell of a lot of fans!!

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  • At 10:31 PM, Blogger Mary Ellen said…

    I wonder if any of her team mates were doping. They all had the same team doctor, I'm sure he just didn't do it with Marion. It's sad, to have to cheat in order to prove yourself.

  • At 11:16 AM, Anonymous Beaudoin LeBlanc said…

    Barry Bonds should also be stripped of his so called record breaking performance.

    It sickens me to see athletes cover their deception with the age old excuse "I didn't know I was taking drugs."

  • At 2:23 PM, Blogger ParisL0ve2 said…

    Oh I totally agree Beaudoin!! Barry Bonds should be stripped of his record. He should be banned from sports for life. He should be in jail for lying about his "roids" usage.

    Everyone who uses deserves to be stripped of their accomplishments, and be banned from sports.

    I don't believe for one second that an athlete wouldn't have enough brains to question what they're using. They work hard to perfect their bodies. To even suggest that they unknowingly took a banned substance is a joke!!

    Mary, I don't know if her other team members were doping as well. It makes one wonder. If they were, they need to own up to it. If they have never been involved in doping, this scandal will forever leave people wondering. They have Marion to thank for that!!


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