Monday, August 24, 2009

Only Time Will Tell....

Clearly, my blog lacks a certain level of seriousness/importance. You won't find posts about health care reform, terrorism, or war crimes. This is my opportunity to relax and share useless information haha. We hear about politics, crime, and disease enough through TV, newspapers and satellite radio. However, I feel obliged to talk about Michael Vick. For those of you who live under a rock, Vick is an ex-quarterback of the Falcons, and recently served an 18 month sentence for illegal dog fighting. On May 21, 2009, Michael Vick was released from prison. Not even three months had passed when Vick signed a $1.6 million contract with the Philadelphia Eagles in August.

Noah and I have been following this story since Vick was first accused in 2007. A few nights ago, we watched the 60 Minutes interview with Michael Vick. Before I decided whether I think Vick feels guilt and remorse for his actions, I wanted to hear what he had to say.

- Michael Vick was 8 years old when he was first introduced to dog fighting. He thought it was "cool" and "exciting."
- (2007) In a farm in rural Virginia, police uncovered an illegal dog fighting operation at Vick's home called "Bad News Kennels." They removed 66 dogs, exhumed the bodies of 7 dogs, and found dog fighting paraphernalia.
- Vick was ordered to pay over $1 million dollars in attempt to rehabilitate the saved dogs in an effort to adopt them out.
- He pleaded guilty to barbarous treatment of the dogs including, "beating them, shooting them, electrocuting them, and drowning them."
- He says, "it was wrong... I feel so bad about that now. I didn't step up. I wasn't the leader."
- He ran "Bad News Kennels" with a friend for 6 years
- Lost $135 million contract. "I deserved to lose the $135 million." He had a reputation for being lazy. The "last one to practice and the first one out of the locker room."
- When Vick was first accused, he lied about it. Why? "I knew my career was in jeopardy...I knew it was going to be a tremendous letdown."

The interview also included the president of the Humane Society:
- He remains "skeptical" but enlisted Vick to become an ambassador for the Humane Society
- There are 40,000 professional dog fighters in the country and 100,000 street fighters.
- Dogs die from blood loss, injury and shock
- Michael Vick visits schools in his community and encourages the children to "love your animals."

"I am going to let my actions speak louder than my words...I can be a living example of what not to do." - Michael Vick

Post-interview reactions:

- He served 18 months in jail for a crime he LIED about. How long would he have served if he had told the truth? 3 days???
- I am not one to hold grudges and I feel that everyone deserves a 2nd chance; however, do I think Vick served a sentence equal to the crime? NO
- What does it say about our society when a man who has beaten and killed dogs for 6 years is now making $1.6 million a year??? NFL football players (especially quarterbacks) are treated like gods. Does he deserve that? I don't think so...
- If someone is able to treat harmless animals in a barbaric manner, would they do the same to humans?

Do I think Vick feels genuine sorrow for his horrific actions? Jury's still out...

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