Although what Vick and others involved in dogfighting have done to dogs is horrible, Dave Zirin has an excellent point that condemnation of Vick to the point of not even considering the possibility that he might (eventually) deserve forgiveness or the possibility of redemption is mighty peculiar. Would the public response to Vick's crimes have been the same had Vick been white? I seriously doubt it.
And unless they have been vegan their whole adult lives, those who express the wish that Vick should be punished for the rest of his life are not innocent in terms of their treatment of animals. Like Vick, people who hunt, fish, or even just eat animal products bear responsibility for inflicting suffering and death on animals purely for their own pleasure. And almost all of us have at least done the latter for much if not all of our lives. We can't change the past, but we can learn from our mistakes and stop regarding animals as things that we can treat however we wish--and so can Michael Vick. Will he? Who knows? But there's no reason that I'm aware of to assume that he can't.
Aug 3 2009 - 10:07pm