There's more to this case than just drug-taking
If reports are true that Lance Armstrong confessed to Oprah Winfrey in an interview to air here on Friday that he used performance-enhancing drugs, they should be taken with caution.
A confession to have cheated would be a step in the right direction for all those who have been robbed of potential wins and livelihoods, or even the many who believed in him.
But before anyone can really start applauding his confession - if that is what he provided Winfrey in their interview recorded in Austin, Texas on Monday (US time) - we must first know exactly what he confessed to. And that must be more than just a ''Yeah, I took drugs'' admission.
Contoversial ... Lance Armstrong. Photo: Lucas Jackson
The 41-year-old Texan has a lot more questions to answer, based on the United States Anti-Doping Agency's ''Reasoned Decision'' last October for its findings against Armstrong, who has been banned for life and was stripped of all results from August 1, 1998 - including seven Tour de France titles.
Not only do the charges focus on drug-taking, but possession and trafficking - and with that, a litany of charges of intimidation that bullying that extends way beyond sport.
That Armstrong refused to answer the charges in the first place, saying the USADA was carrying out a witch-hunt, is an issue in itself.
And if he has admitted to doping to Winfrey, as has been reported, he must be made to answer for his claims about USADA's motivation - add to that his attacks against those who were brave enough to stand up against him during his peak years and later when they agreed to testify.
Which makes you wonder why - up until this point since the interview with Winfrey was made - all that has been reported is that he admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs. Since the news broke that Armstrong would be speaking with Winfrey, public reaction has made it clear that anything less than a full-blown explanation to all of the evidence against him will not be accepted.
Or are the drip-feeding ''reports'' such as this one merely meant to maintain public awareness that the interview will be aired on Friday - thereby boosting ratings for Winfrey's OWN cable TV network?
I hope there is more to come … Armstrong owes it to all to answer every charge against him. Based on the evidence, he owes more than the staff members at the Livestrong charity workers an apology. Many lives have been left in tatters by their dealings with Armstrong.
The fallout will be huge if it is indeed true that Armstrong has provided Winfrey with a full confession. There will be massive legal repercussions for Armstrong from any confession. But if he falls short of providing full disclosure, his future will remain doomed.
Many will say that future should remain doomed regardless. But he will have no chance if it shows that he has held back. Either way, we are owed the truth.