Levi Leipheimer: Cyclist, Philanthropist....Idiot

Sep 27 2010 Published by under Animals in Research, Public Health

Of course there is no particular reason to think that bike racing celebrity types should be any smarter than your average Hollywood actor or even one of those ruthless self-promoting celebrities who you can't quite figure out why they are famous.

Levi Leipheimer is a US professional cyclist who has become, over the course of a long career, a top talent with a long list of accomplishments. Recently his accomplishments have been in association with Lance Armstrong who is an absolute pitbull when it comes to battling cancer. I've mentioned before that following his Twitter gives you a whole new appreciation for how much this guy works at the whole LiveStrong charity.

And it isn't like Levi is just a passive participant. He puts the name of some kid with "pineoblastomas, a rare and aggressive brain cancer that afflicts less than 2% of all juvenile brain cancer patients" on his bike. Or remembers the name of a junior high school counselor who fell to colon cancer in another race.

He sponsors and promotes "Levi's Gran Fondo", a charity ride to raise money for various causes including "The Lance Armstrong Foundation received a $10,000 donation from the GranFondo for their ongoing funding of cancer research".

Research.
So what in the hell is he doing
tweeting this?

Odesssa and I hanging w/ @richroll and @jaiseed at the 30th anniversary [famous ARA wackanut organization-DM] Gala. Great night http://yfrog.com/3upsxnj

I've said it before...we really need to get Lance Armstrong focused on including animal research as part of his message.

8 responses so far

  • With people like Levi, I would imagine it's a case of the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing. PETA is truly a wackaloon organization and their goals are pretty darn obvious to most people, but perhaps Levi isn't aware of how divergent the two communities he's involved with are? Does that excuse his idiocy? Maybe a bit if that's truly the case.

  • drugmonkey says:

    His entry point seems to be animal spaying since he's done some ad work on that topic sponsered by the aforementioned nutter organization. As you say, perhaps he's simply not connecting the dots on their radical stop-all-research agenda. This is why I would like to see Lance start connecting those dots and come out strong in favor of animal research.

  • Meat Eater 2 says:

    A few years ago, Leipheimer joined his spouse in her veganism. I'm not sure how that fundamentalist move affected his cycling, but it seems like an odd thing for an endurance athlete to do. Still, he did it. I suspect that his wife is the one who is behind the PETA support. Further, this might be idiocy, but people who do not eat and breathe research issues are not likely to understand the battles. They guy has a career that is quite time-consuming, although, for him, lucrative. He has a family, or at least a spouse. This is not unusual for your average person, IMO.

  • Paul says:

    It seems that Lance has had his own run-ins with PeTA, last year they took offence at a bike that Damian Hirst made for him http://gawker.com/506656/peta-takes-aim-at-hirst-armstrong so he may be willing to educate his friend.

    LiveStrong, Lance's charity, seems to be all about patient education, support and empowerment rather than research into new treatments, but I dare say that he follows what is happening in the world of research quite keenly. A good approach might be to arrange for a cancer researcher who they've worked with to talk to Levi about the role of animal studies in cancer research.

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Drug Monkey, Joe and Allyson J Bennett, ScientopiaBlogs. ScientopiaBlogs said: Levi Leipheimer: Cyclist, Philanthropist….Idiot http://dlvr.it/61zzr [...]

  • James says:

    (1) You can support PETA's efforts against cruel puppy mills, the clubbing of seals for their fur pelts for rich people to wear, the horrendous nature of cattle, pig, and chicken lots, etc., etc., without supporting its stand on animal research.

    (2) You can support Cancer research and awareness efforts AND support a halt to animal testing for Cancer research.

    (3) You can love and even be related to a Cancer victim, as I am, and still be against the cruel treatment of God's living creatures just to save others.

    (4) Idiots are people who believe political issues can be seen in stark black and white.

  • pinus says:

    How does one selectively support the actions of PETA? Is there a box you check when you send them money that says 'Actually, I am for animal research, so take it easy on them?"

  • drugmonkey says:

    1- you can "support" it, but the second you give them your money you are in support of their extremist anti-research efforts including any diversion of money they may be making to support the most extreme of criminal terrorists. money is fungible.

    2- you can make all kinds of empty claims, this does not mean that you are actually "supporting" cancer research in any meaningful way. Also, if by your actions (see 1) you prevent the research that will result in the most meaningful progress forward then your other actions supporting research that is ok, but less fruitful, is hollow.

    3- Sure. we are able to take all kinds of actions and hold all sorts of beliefs that are not in the actual best interest of those we profess to love. see those religious types that would like to impose their practices and beliefs on those they love. Whether one "loves" a cancer victim is entirely orthogonal to whether one is promoting or hindering the efforts to help with that or other cancers

    4- we agree entirely.

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