From The Lost Dogs by Jim Gorant, senior editor of Sports Illustrated...
"As that dog lay on the ground, fighting for air, Quanis Phillips grabbed its front legs and Michael Vick grabbed its back legs. They swung the dog over their head like a jump rope then slammed it to the ground. The first impact didn't kill it. So, Phillips and Vick slammed it again. The two men kept at it, alternating back and forth, pounding the creature against the ground until, at last, the little red dog was dead."
Yes, that is the same Michael Vick that is the 2011 Subway BET Sportsman of the Year and the new face of Nike.
I know, many think that he has paid his debt to society. He did time. He speaks out against dog fighting. He paid money towards the support of his surviving dogs. But the fact is, had he actually been tried according to the animal cruelty laws in the state of Virginia, he would have been charged with twenty dogfights and the cruel deaths of nine dogs. He would have faced up to sixty-five years in prison. Instead, he was able to plea bargain to one count of dog fighting got a three year suspended sentence for time served on the federal charges of one count of Conspiracy to Travel in Interstate Commerce in Aid of Unlawful Activities and to Sponsor a Dog in an Animal Fight Venture. He served 18 months of that 23 month sentence. And now, he's making millions, and being held up as a role model.
How many of you think that he would have gotten the same sentence if he weren't a famous football player?
I don't care how much time he's done, or how much he says he's sorry. People who are willing to beat a dog to death with their bare hands are scary. Experts have long acknowledged a link between animal abuse and violent crime against other people. So here we are rewarding a man who has openly showed sociopathic behavior. Do you want him to be a role model to your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews? Would you like to have him as a neighbor? Date your daughter? As a society, we need to stop rewarding celebrities who display violent and unstable behavior.
It's too bad. I like Subway's food, and Nike's products. Yesterday I was shopping for new sneakers, and I passed over a pair of Nikes that I really liked and purchased a pair from New Balance. And from now on, I will probably go to Quiznos, Casey's, or Hy-Vee for my sandwiches.