Back in 2007, animal rights terrorists and over reactor's alike had total conniptions when it was revealed that Michael Vick, then quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons, was involved in dog fighting. Vick and three others were convicted of federal offense conspiracy charges, and were sent to prison. In addition, Vick was suspended by the NFL, and forced to pay the Atlanta Falcons back a portion of his earnings. He also lost millions of dollars in endorsement deals and was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy the following year.
After losing almost everything, being locked away in a federal prison for 2 years, issuing numerous public apologies, and turning his life around once he paid his debt to society, Michael Vick is still not forgiven.
He made the mistake of tweeting a picture of his daughter at home with a box of dog treats on the table in the background. This has caused quite a stir and the fact that his probation ended in July doesn't seem to matter.
Are prominent African-Americans ever really forgiven?
I know that the following is difficult to overlook especially in light of what the general consensus is. But, lets forget the fact that OJ Simpson is a low life jerk, who turned his back on the Black community years ago, for a moment. After he was found not guilty of murdering his ex-wife and her lover by a jury of his peers, he was still found guilty in the court of public opinion, and was hated, ostracized, and ridiculed for many years after. Of course he was probably guilty but no more guilty than Robert Blake who was no where near as reviled after being acquitted after standing trial for murdering his wife. The reasons are clear. African-Americans are held to a standard that is much higher than that of their Caucasion counterparts because in America most of the public believes that when we prosper it is a privilege that has been given to us, and not a right. Their conditioning suggests that if we show ourselves ungrateful by betraying the public trust we should then be stripped of our status, wealth, and fame for as long as we are no longer deemed valuable.
Michael Vick has the right to own a dog. Unlike Robert Blake and OJ Simpson he paid for his crime, and has become a better man for it.
Perhaps the most alarming thing about this case in comparison to the other 2 cases I mentioned in this article is the fact that a clear message regarding the value of human life has been sent. That message says that the life of a canine is far more valuable.