As if the current holes in his feet were not causing him to walk like a drunken sailor snorting Quaaludes, President Obama very likely set himself up to look like a total moron for complimenting a football team for hiring an ex-con, Michael Vick, who spent time in prison for dog-fighting. Obama, who I will no longer refer to as President, is either trying desperately to win the convict vote, the sports vote, or the Philadelphia vote, has totally forgotten recent history, or he is a lot more desperate than we know.
Michael Vick has a history. This is not a history littered with championship trophies or public service deeds, or even so much as a long stretch of time where he was not looked upon with suspicion. He has been dogged, no pun intended, with rumors of drug use and his brother was tossed from the college football circuit for marijuana use. Michael, ever the example, was busted at an airport for trace amounts of pot in a water bottle but since he was winning at the time all was swept under the rug. The American public, and the NFL knows this, will accept almost any sort of behavior from anyone as long as they can win.
The problem is Michael Vick is a one trick pony. He is a mediocre quarterback, at best, who runs well. He has good games against bad teams, and bad games against good teams, and horrible games against teams that can stop the run. Worse, he has the consistency of a pot head with a fat paycheck. And even worse than that, once he does have a good game, or even a great game, you can look for him to fold the next one under. Michael Vick believes what he reads about himself. He believes what he wants to believe when the people around him, and have you see the people he keeps company with, tells him what he wants to hear.
I have no idea if Obama knows this, and I am certain the NFL does not, but character does matter. It matter when people hear you talk about giving someone a second chance, when Vick has been given many second chances. The pot has been swept under the rug, the rude behavior towards fans has been swept under the rug, the gambling, the herpes lawsuit, the drinking, the drugs and that group of low life thugs he keeps as an entourage is all ignored because he went to jail one time in his life when he should still be in there for a dozen different reasons. If Vick goes off the deep end and winds up killing someone Obama is going to learn a lot about second chances because the voters are not going to give him one.
The Dog People will turn on Obama for this. We, and I speak for no one but myself and my three mutts, do not forgive dog-fighting. We do not believe Vick has changed or will change. We believe a person’s past is the very best indicator as to where they will wind up and I see Vick in jail in less than a year, and I see Obama sitting in the stands watching football in January of 2013 just as unemployed as Vick.
Michael Vick is a sadistic, cruel, and unfeeling sociopath incapable of empathy. He’s a self serving puppet for people trying to make a buck off football and they will give him enough rope to hang himself if he can produce on the field. The people making money off Vick do not care if he self destructs in a season, or two seasons, but they know he will. They know a running quarterback is on the endangered species list each time he runs, and they know his life span in the game is a limited thing. But they also know he will sell tickets and they know as long as they can get a moron like Obama to say a kind word about second chances they can count on two, three, or maybe even four more games before Vick is hit hard enough to put him down, or is stupid enough to do something that ends it.
Tuesday night we saw Michael Vick in a game most pundits predicted he would burst into a great white light, and put up numbers that would ensure his claim to the league’s Most Valuable Player, a title he has said he would vote for himself for, if he could. What fans saw instead, and I’m getting this second hand because I no longer follow the game, is Michael Vick the way he truly is; inconstant, frightened, unsure, and likely stoned out of his mind. When the going gets rough, the potheads light up. A team with a third string quarterback and headed home for the playoffs lined up against Vick and his playoff dreams, it was Vick who fell victim to himself. In a game most sports writers predicted Vick would most surely be taken out of early because they would be so far ahead, Vick looked not only bad, but very bad. He looked like, oh wow, Michael Vick back before he was convicted of dog-fighting. He looked like an ex-con who had been caught conning an entire league, a city, a fan base, and not least of all, a president.
Character matters. The NFL cannot allow dogfighters, rapists, murderers and drug dealers to hold hostage a game simply because they play well. They have to take steps to get rid of highly paid and popular players when these people commit crimes the rest of us would be jailed for. They have to step up, and be better than the men who play the game. Obama ought to know this. He ought to realize if Vick kills someone in the off season he’s going to have that collar on his political neck forever.
For a man who rescued a dog from a shelter Obama has shown a total inability to distinguish which creature, his dog or Michael Vick, is better served by a second chance.