Michael Vick: second chance?

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Posted Wednesday, September 9, 2009 - 9:09pm

Fact: Michael Vick is a convicted felon. Fact: Michael Vick performed major acts of cruelty on the pit bulls he bought, bred and abused. Fact: Michael Vick has completed his prison sentence and is serving probation. Fact: Michael Vick was reinstated into the NFL and signed with the Philadelphia Eagles. But should Vick be given a second chance?

Here's the thing . . . What Michael Vick did to those dogs was disgusting, inhumane and wrong. But Vick was sentenced to and completed 23 months in federal prison. Harsh time, especially when compared with the 30-day sentence pro football player Donte Stallworth completed recently for killing a person while driving drunk.

Some wish Vick would suffer the same fate as the animals he tortured, and argue that he shouldn't be allowed to play football again. He deserves a chance to earn a living. The legal fees and prison time left Vick nearly bankrupt. Vick's profession happens to be a professional athlete. At 29, he is able to do his job well and become a productive member of society. Vick accepted his punishment and paid his debt to society. He shouldn't be denied a second chance, by the NFL, the Eagles or anyone else.

Like it or not Vick is a celebrity and as a celebrity, he has the opportunity to influence his fans and other people. Why not use this to our advantage?

Vick announced a partnership between himself and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) last May for an Anti-Dogfighting campaign. With all the media attention, this Vick controversy is receiving, this partnership could potentially be highly effective. He still has many fans throughout the country, and seeing him participate in anti-dogfighting campaigns can reach out and prevent the sport from progressing and getting bigger.

We need watch and see how much Vick follows through with his word to speak out to the youth of America about the evils of dog fighting. Out of those who participate in the sport of dog fighters in this country, Michael Vick is in the unique position of influencing a high amount of people away from the sport.

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