Re: Don't wait, suspend Vick now
- From: "hamburger helper" <nothing@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2007 21:40:14 -0500
"tiny dancer" <tinydancer357@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
Don't wait, suspend Vick now
NFL, Falcons can't afford to wait for court case to be decided
By Alan Abrahamson
NBCSports.comPosted: Jul.20, 2007, 2:51 pm EDT
Michael Vick was indicted Tuesday, it's now Friday and Vick is still a
member in good standing of the Atlanta Falcons.
Vick should take a voluntary leave.
Or he should be suspended -- albeit with pay -- immediately and
If the Falcons don't suspend Vick, the NFL should.
This is not to say that Vick is guilty of the heinous allegations leveled
the indictment. He is innocent until proven guilty.
But that's not the issue.
The issue is whether he has the right to play professional football while
under indictment -- or whether it's a privilege to be in the league.
The answer is clear.
It's a privilege.
And Vick has, through the conduct alleged by the United States government
the case against him, forfeited that privilege.
For the league, the issue is both complicated and yet remarkably simple.
Commissioner Roger Goodell has made it plain that certain conduct can't
won't be tolerated. The conduct alleged in the indictment is, without
question, that kind of conduct. The indictment says, among other things,
that dogs were trained to fight and that dogs deemed unworthy fighters
killed, some electrocuted, some beaten to death.
That is despicable.
How in the world does it serve the league to allow someone accused of that
sort of heinous conduct to take the field?
Adam "Pacman" Jones of the Tennessee Titans is now looking at a one-year
suspension -- even though he has been convicted of nothing.
Jones is out and yet Vick might still be in? No way.
For the Falcons, meanwhile, the issues are, again, complex and yet simple.
Vick is the face of the franchise. He is owed millions and millions of
dollars. He is, if not a great quarterback, a pretty good one, and no
question it is a thrill for fans to watch him run with the ball.
All that pales in the face of the allegations leveled in that indictment.
Which leads to this:
It's one thing to read about dogs being electrocuted to death.
It's another to see it.
Can anyone seriously doubt that there is video -- either still shots or
video, even if cell-phone quality -- of some or most of the acts alleged
the government? Once those shots get out, and assuming there are such
they will indeed get out, the Vick case becomes the Abu Ghraib of dog
fighting. Do the Falcons really want to run that risk?
As Vick's lawyers have undoubtedly explained to him by now in explicit
detail, this is the United States government he is up against, not the
or local authorities. Vick is in a world of serious legal hurt.
The U.S. government has been known to lose in court. But not very often.
I guarantee you that this case, like all high-profile cases, was reviewed
time and again by very senior prosecutors, and I mean very senior, before
the indictment was made a matter of public record.
Also, let's acknowledge that the U.S. government brought this case for the
primary reason of sending a message -- both to those who would engage in
fighting and those whom federal prosecutors clearly believe have done an
inadequate job policing and prosecuting dog fighting. The message is
unequivocal: dog fighting is not acceptable in civil society.
This sort of thing is exactly what federal prosecutors do. As in the BALCO
doping cases, they bring cases they are confident they can win on matters
they deem to be of significant public interest.
So Vick ought to sit out.
Or be made to sit out.
And then justice can take its course.
If Vick goes to trial and is convicted and goes to prison, and under the
federal sentencing guidelines, there is every chance he would see real
time, that's the end of his football career -- and the league and the
Falcons would, in the meantime, have had the chance to take a stand for
If Vick goes to trial and is acquitted, good for Vick. But that would
inevitably, to the next question -- what then?
If I'm the Falcons, the allegations in that indictment are so detailed, so
heinous, that even if he were adjudged not guilty that would hardly
And the day he was acquitted, I'd shake his hand and wish him good luck.
And then I'd cut him.
Wow I'm surprised this writer is taking such a stance. Without Vick the
Falcons are nothing. (Not that they are that great *with* him) But I agree
completely, and I wish to see him cut.
I know I'm naive about these things, but until this I thought dogfighting
was only carried out by drug dealers and gang members, people who don't
place that great of a value on human life, much less the lives of animals.
This came as quite a shock to me.
HH, former Vick fan
- Don't wait, suspend Vick now
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- Don't wait, suspend Vick now
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