Its been a busy few weeks withthe holidays and work (us underlings have to work through the holidays while the offices are next to empty!) But one thing occurred that couldn't go without mentioning.
Obama made a comment while on a phone call to Eagles owner, Jeffery Lurie, praising him for giving a convict (Vick) a second chance.
For a full description, read the ABC news story here.
Now, I am all for second chances for criminals. In fact, I even wrote my senior thesis in Economics on the effects and causes of imprisonment of young black males. (A full copy of my senior thesis has been published and can be found here. Recently, the US has really stepped up the incarceration rate and that rate is at its highest for young, uneducated black males. Statistics show that this has had damaging affects on children. Those who have been to prison certainly have a hard time finding work, making them more likely to return, and I fully support any program that helps to rehabilitate criminals that come from poverty and keep them out of jail and in work. In this respect, I support Obama's message.
However, that being said, Michael Vick is by no means your average down-on-his-luck criminal. Most people end up in jail, I believe, because they did something they felt they had to do either to survive or to fit in in their communities (ie- gang or drug activity). Vick is a sadistic man who fought breathing living animals for sport and slammed them against concrete when they wouldn't perform. He did so happily, he was not forced to do anything he did.
Vick would like to have you think they he simply "operated" the ring and is sorry for what he "allowed to happen to the dogs," while first hand accounts from Jim Gorrant's book "The Lost Dogs" confirm that Vick murdered dogs himself. He is a ruthless killer.
This man now thinks having a dog would be therapeutic for him. As an outraged commenter posted on a blog that I follow, "This man does not have the right to own a HOUSE PLANT."
The fact that he feels he can say a thing like that tells me the support from his fans (AND of the president of the US) has gone to his head.
Apparently he feels (as does Obama) that 19 months in jail was "sufficient time" to learn his lesson and pay his debt to society. I say bull s*it. Not only have I boycotted the Eagles, but I want to boycott the entire NFL for allowing criminals to become celebrities. Vick is not a common criminal who deserves a job at the local grocery store to pick himself up out of poverty. He is a man who has been given everything in life because of his athletic skills, including scholarship to college and millions of dollars a year. He has no excuse for his crimes and has not done nearly enough time for me to consider him "repentant." I would start with at least a year in jail for every single skeleton they found laying in the dirt in his backyard.
It is my belief that the praise he is getting is damaging because it is teaching children that as long as you 'do your time' you can have everything you ever wanted, and regain the life you had before you committed a crime. Essentially, Vick got away with this. His celebrity has embolden him to say he wants a dog- something Pit owners everywhere should never ever allow.
So basically, all I have to say to Obama is- Are you kidding me?
I'd like him to read Gorant's book about this criminal and his dogs, and issue an official appology.