Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Vick will not play in the NFL again

The bizarre story of the evil doings at Michael Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels operation was nearly beaten to death last year. It stayed at the top of the news for months. Today we see Vick is back in the news, now traveling in the shackles of a convicted man to a Virginia courthouse near the scene of his crimes.

Yet some still ask: If boxing and tough man competitions are legal, why is dogfighting so wrong? Can't dogfighting be seen as just another bloody sport, like hunting? And, if animals are shamefully abused all the time by the companies that raise them by the millions in torturous conditions, to eventually be food for us, then why did Vick have go to jail for slaughtering a few pit bulls?

Although there’s no single reason this story has been so big, there is one reason that overshadows the others. While other sports celebrities have committed crimes that might properly be seen as worse than Vick’s, none of those crimes were as bizarre, even unthinkable.

Recently we learned a few family dogs were tossed in the Bad Newz ring, just for grins. And, remember folks, Americans love their pet dogs. Some prefer dogs to people.

There are those Vick fans who have refused to accept -- no matter what -- that one of their favorite football players from Virginia Tech, or the Atlanta Falcons, is a total scumbag. They want him back on the playing field because he’s fun to watch. They assume his talent for football will trump all else.

Well, it says here that the NFL is by far the most buttoned-down of all the professional sports overseeing bodies. It certainly doesn’t want PETA activists dressed up like tortured dogs demonstrating at every game. And, that’s exactly what will happen if Vick returns.

Furthermore, the image-conscious corporations that act as sponsors and partners of NFL games are never going to want anything to do with Michael Vick again. Once he’s done his time, I will be amazed if we ever see the radioactive Mr. Vick play another down in a NFL game.

Next season, try to imagine a NFL game's broadcast beginning with a series of corporate logos flashing up over the pictures of PETA demonstrators in front of the stadium. Then imagine the boycotts of companies that sponsor such broadcasts. Do you get the picture?

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Update: Gov. Tim Kaine weighed in on this topic:
Should Michael Vick be allowed back in the NFL?

"I don't think somebody convicted of charges like this should be back in the NFL," Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine said on WTOP's Ask the Governor program Tuesday.

Click here to read the WTOP report.

3 comments:

vjp said...

I'm beginning to think the same thing.

Anonymous said...

As a Tech alum, I'd like to see Mr. Vick serve his time and then never be heard from again. However, I'm not so confident that will happen. What if he pledges all, or a large portion, of any NFL contract he signs to PETA, and he confronts the issue head-on, saying repeatedly, and unequivocally, that what he did was horribly wrong? If he still owns the property where the illegal activities were based, he could turn it into a model dog rescue facility. It may take him a year or two post-prison to establish sincerity, but it appears to me that there's a path for his return. OTOH, his younger brother had plenty of opportunities for redemption, and availed himself of none, so maybe it isn't in the Vick DNA.

Ernie Brooks
Washington, DC

F.T. Rea said...

Ernie,

If I thought Vick could do all that, in a convincing manner, and be patient throughout the process, I might not have written that he'd never play in the NFL again.