I want to preface my next blog with this before I get started: I love animals, especially dogs. I have a dog. If he could talk, he would tell you that my family and I love and spoil him to death.
With that said, I am happy Michael Vick was acquired by the Philadelphia Eagles last week. In my humble opinion, he deserves a second chance. Vick has spent the better part of the last two years in prison. He is currently adhering to his community service obligations.
Now under no circumstances do I condone what Vick did. It was horrifying, and disgusting. However it appears that we (as a society) are more sympathetic to animals than people. I’m sure the PETA people will be protesting at every Eagles game, and some road games this year.
There are many other notable athletes who were involved in far worse incidences that did not garnish a fraction of the attention Michael Vick’s dog fighting operation did. Jim Craig the former gold medal winning goalie for team USA of 1980 was involved in a fatal vehicle accident. Atlanta Thrasher’s player Dan Snyder was killed while riding in a car driven by team mate Dany Heatly. Heatly was speeding and was intoxicated at the time of the accident. Finally, Donte Stallworth of the Cleveland Browns hit and killed a man while returning home after an all night binge. Stallworth was drunk and killed a man as he was walking to the bus stop to catch a bus to work. Stallworth got a laughable 30 days in jail.
Now the point of the three above cases is this. Neither Jim Craig nor Dany Heatly took much heat (no pun intended) when they returned to the ice. Although Dante Stallworth served his 30 day sentence, he will be suspended for the entire 2009 NFL season. But I ask this question about Stallworth: will he undergo the scrutiny that Vick is going through (now) when he returns to the NFL next year? I bet not. Ok, there may a scattering of protesters from MADD here and there, but it probably won’t be as bad as what the PETA people have planned for this year.
Again, don’t get me wrong. I don’t condone what Michael Vick did. I however know people who are more interested in animals than people. I have relative who is more interested in my dog than my two boys. In fact twelve years ago I had to get rid of my Bassett Hound because he bit my son who wasn’t even one yet. This relative told me that she would have “picked” the dog over my son.
So my point to this is that we need to get our priorities straight. People who kill people should be far more scrutinized than those who kill animals.