But that's not why even non-sports-fans are "moved" by Jones' downfall. It's just another doped-up charlatan getting caught. People seem to be in more of a "who's next" frame of mind about it, to the extent they think about it at all. Aside from the people who play and the people who write and talk about the people who play, there is probably less furrowing of the brows on this issue than the scriveners imagine. It sucks, but lots of things suck. Life goes on.
But of course this is all just a pretext for a misplaced fashionista jeremiad, replete with imprecatory scuds at supposedly dolled-up, less "real" female athletes.
This is silly. Auto racing bores me to tears, and on the hotness scale, Patrick hits me in the "not bad, but eh" category. As always, your mileage may vary. But she was Indy Rookie of the Year in 2005, leading for 19 laps, and she's finished higher in the Indy 500 than any woman, the only other one I recall finishing in the top ten being Janet Guthrie. She's not "the Anna Kournikova of the Indy circuit"; Kournikova's (and Jones', for that matter) competition was not 99% male, for starters.
Amanda Beard is hotter in my estimation, though her Playboy shoot was regrettably modest. Still, she's won two gold and four silver medals, presumably without "help", and she simply took a different path in utilizing her physical attributes for some commercial presence. Hell, even the much-maligned Kournikova had some actual success, as a 17-year-old beating Lindsay Davenport and Steffi Graf, again without chemical enhancements.
I don't operate under the illusion that Playboy or any of the numerous Maxim-type magazines represent some sort of artistic triumph or even an aspiration for women. But they represent a market, just like Vogue and its literary cousins represent a market. One is whacking material for a testoterone-and-gadget-driven group, the other is whacking material for people who think that paying $900 for a pair of cruel shoes is a good idea. To each their own.
But it's this smug, supercilious 'tude thrown out there, like Marion Jones took some high road while Anna Kournikova or Amanda Beard did not, that bugs me. Subjective looksism aside, I don't buy that some gem-encrusted gown automatically confers some sort of higher standing over women who did not cheat at their sports, but posed for racier photos. It's a very contrived comparison, one that barely belongs in a fashion section, much less a sports page.