Apparently, Michael Vick of the NFL Atlanta Falcons, or Ron Mexico, is allegedly guilty of involvement in an alleged dog fighting ring where alleged dogs were allegedly killed for fun and allegedly gambling, allegedly. I hope that’s enough ‘alleged’s but I am sure people are forced to plead guilty to crimes they never committed to accept the plea bargain rather than risk a harsher sentence after a financially and emotionally draining trial Besides, I have no better idea of his guilt than you or any ‘journalist’ does. Luckily, ignorance never stopped people from commenting, declaring Vick the worst villain mastermind since Saddam Hussein was caught.
For the purposes of this article only, I am assuming that Vick is guilty, because I want to examine some underlying issues.
Vick’s treatment in the PR-Media (formerly Mainstream Media) is easy to classify, as this story has been the topic of many news items. Vick has been utterly trashed more than Lindsay Lohan recently. (Not that I even know who Lindsay Lohan is, other than a character on TV who takes lots of drugs, allegedly). In the press, even Jon Stewart of the Daily Show is criticizing Vick’s behavior. The criticism is much louder than you hear for wife beating (Bobby Cox?), for example.
Some reports say that Vick’s dog fighting rings contained torture, which is just horrible. Somehow, the outrage for a rumor of dog torturing is more than the proof of actual torture of human beings. Perhaps that is because the PR reports (TV news) are put out by the same companies that profit from war activities.
So clearly, Vick’s actions have been classified as worse than beating women or torturing humans. The NFL also feels the same way, as they have suspended Vick and publicly admonished him, while ignoring the cases where players are accused of hitting women.
My personal feelings are that killing dogs for fun and sport is disgusting and vile. I also think killing deer and pheasant for fun and sport is just as disgusting and vile. In fact, hunting and dog fighting are very similar. Consider that they both: involve killing of cute animals, like deer and dogs (ok, so the dogs aren’t cute, they are mean pit bulls, like Karl Rove with less frothing at the mouth). Both activities are dangerous to people, although hunting is probably more dangerous considering gun accidents and Cheney style hunting accidents. In fact, I can only think of a few distinct differences:
1) some hunters eat what they kill, although few appear to kill solely for food
2) dog fighting is mainly done by the lower classes of society, in America these lower classes are referred to as ‘Black’, even if they include poor Whites. This may account for the difference in applicable laws.
3) Hats. One group wears bright orange goofy hats, while the other wears baseball caps over to the side. Advantage, dog-fighting.
All in all, I think it is objectively clear that hunting and dog fighting are in the same group. Morally, I feel the same way about Vick as I do Todd Helton and the other people who kill for fun and sport. They all have committed horrible acts that do not deserve losing freedom and career for a number of years, like Vick.
At least Vick’s sentence will be more compassionate than the one the authorities are handing out to the dogs involved. Yes that’s right, the same system that condemns Vick for killing dogs is about to kill those dogs themselves.