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Still trying to get this brain wrapped around the news that Nike will withdraw its nine-year financial support of the LiveStrong Foundation. Sure, can totally understand why the company dropped Lance Armstrong after his admission to using Performance Enhancing Drugs (PED) throughout his legendary cycling career. During those years, Lance Armstrong provided Nike a high-profile brand and sold a lot of Nike and LiveStrong gear. The relationship went two ways; Lance received money for the endorsement; Nike made money selling Lance Armstrong products. The LiveStrong Foundation received a portion of the proceeds from Nike’s LiveStrong line.

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Armstrong’s fall from grace tarnished his brand—far more than Michael Jordan’s alleged gambling issues, Tiger Woods’ infidelity, or even Michael Vick’s felony conviction and incarceration for dog-fighting. But to abandon the LiveStrong Foundation—even though Armstrong already had severed all ties to the Foundation—just baffles.

Putting aside the facts that Armstrong cheated by using PEDs, lied about it, and ruthlessly intimidated anyone who alleged otherwise, the LiveStrong Foundation (formerly the Lance Armstrong Foundation) raised awareness and erased the stigma formerly attached to a diagnosis of cancer. Survivorship became a badge of honor—and those 87-Million yellow wristbands Nike produced and sold still represent hope and courage to those fighting the battle.

The Foundation soldiers on, with no ties to Armstrong, following its mission, declaring that it is StillStrong. Nike’s decision to cut ties to the Foundation… well, that’s like throwing the baby out with the bath water, as my grandma used to say. Armstrong himself may be toxic, but the 28-Million cancer survivors (not victims) worldwide still crave the hope, the resources the Foundation provides.

With a closet filled with Nike LiveStrong products, yellow wrist band still on the arm, can only hope that another, much wiser corporation will step up and continue to produce those symbols of solidarity and hope.

At the end of the day, would much rather wear a LiveStrong shirt than a Nike Michael Vick jersey. Just saying.

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