by Travis Hudgons
Corporate icon Martha Stewart was convicted on nine counts, including charges of securities fraud and obstruction of justice. She served five months in prison and five months of house arrest.
Upon her release, she continued with her previous career path. She now serves as host of The Martha Stewart Show and continues production of her Martha Stewart Everyday line at Kmart. Stewart committed a crime. She served her time. Her debt was paid.
Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick also committed a crime. He also served time. And like Stewart, he, too, has paid his debt to society. But Vick has not been quietly welcomed back into his former life.
So why has Vick become the whipping boy for this issue? It seems animal rights zealots have turned all of their focus on Vick because they have been ineffective in other avenues of their crusade. Vick fought and killed dogs. Killing dogs is a horrible act to some. And it’s a crime that is punishable with jail time. DeKalb, Fulton and Cobb county animal control facilities killed more than 17,818 animals in 2005. Is this not the real issue? Aren’t they the bigger threat?
So where are the lines of protesters? The same people who have called for Vick’s career to be ended should also be at the doors of various animal control shelters calling for their immediate closure. Don’t pick and choose. Wrong is wrong.
To me it doesn’t make sense. Why are they preventing him from going on with his life? It’s over–done. His time has been served, debt has been paid. There’s no need to continue to drag his name through the mud. There is absolutely no reason for him not to resume his previous career path. It’s not like he was accused of breaking an NFL rule such as cheating...Bill Belichick.
Vick was locked away for the past two years. His endorsement deals are gone. And his NFL future is still in question. The damage has been done, and his debt has been satisfied in the eyes of the law. He should be allowed, like Stewart, to pick up the pieces and resume his life.
In the wake of the Vick case, there have been a number of anti-Vick Web sites created–with a primary goal of preventing Vick’s return to the NFL.
Sites such as www.sackvick.net are calling for a permanent ban of Vick from the NFL and asking that its supporters boycott the league, and its sponsors, if he is allowed to return.
It’s a good thing that Cleveland Browns wide receiver Donte’ Stallworth killed a human and not a dog.
If Vick never plays another down of football does that mean that the nation’s pet population will be safe from the left-handed killing machine called Michael Vick? Or will the cries of thousand of dogs killed every day in shelters continue to go unheard?