We can stop playing the song, “Who Let the Dogs Out?” Now, we know
the answer: Michael Vick let the dogs out. Not just the dogs, but those
who love dogs more than they like certain people. He also let out – but
not off – the people who claim to be perturbed by what goes on in the
secretive, illegal, violent underworld of dog fighting, yet see nothing
wrong with providing a state-sanctioned license to kill deer and other
innocent animals. The so-called animal rights advocates are just as
hypocritical, claiming to be opposed to killing animals while eating
meat and wearing leather shoes. Or, is it okay to slaughter animals if
the purpose is the feed and clothe the higher order of species?
who pleaded guilty to dog fighting-related charges on Monday, also let
out conspiracy buffs in our community who like to blame White folks for
Why are we so quick to jump to the defense of
troubled Black athletes and entertainers who have had little, if any,
ties to our community? When they act foolishly, why can’t we describe
their behavior as just that without pretending that White people stay
up all night plotting to bring down Vick? You bring the Atlanta Falcons
quarterback down by tackling him. In this instance, he tackled himself.
By the way, the person about to tackle Vick on state charges is an
African-American, a Black man apparently just doing the job he swore to
do in Virginia.
When you push aside the hypocrisy and conspiracy
theories, Michael Vick has no one to blame but himself. With his
football contract and off-field endorsements, Vick was making more than
$1 million a month. Why risk that fortune by operating a dog fighting
ring with three of your homies? Like Vick, the homeboys knew when to
scramble; each lined up to cut a deal with the prosecutor and agreed to
testify against their former benefactor, if necessary.
to the indictment, most of the money bet on the fights was chicken
change (maybe we should say dog change) to Vick – mostly $1,000 to
$3,000, with only one with wagers of $13,000 by each side.
to me, a person whose favorite animals are stuffed, the abuse of the
animals in the Vick case was horrific. The indictment against Vick and
his three codefendants – Purnell Peace, Quannis Phillips and Tony
Taylor – include the following tidbits:
-- In February 2002, when
one dog did not perform well in a “testing” session, Purnell Peace shot
it to death with a .22 caliber pistol.
-- In the summer of 2002, Purnell Peace killed at least one dog that did not perform in a “testing” session by shooting it;
That same summer, Quanis Phillips killed at least one dog that did not
perform well in a ‘testing’ session by shooting the animal.
-- Tony Taylor killed two dogs in the summer of 2002, shooting one and executing the other.
indictment says Vick’s group killed approximately eight dogs on the
property that had not done well in test fights. The various methods
included “hanging, drowning and slamming at least one dog’s body to the
As for Vick’s direct involvement, the indictment alleges
that he paid approximately $34,000 for a property at 1915 Moonlight
Road in Smithfield, Va. to train and house pit bulls for dog fighting.
According to the indictment, Vick also provided the money to place bets
on his dogs. On Monday, Vick did not admit to gambling, a charge that
would carry a lifetime ban from the NFL.
The indictment charges
that Vick and three of his co-defendants began the operation in 2001
when they purchased dogs from owners in Virginia, North Carolina and,
New York. In one dog fight in which each side put up $13,000, Vick’s
female pit bull lost the fight in March 2003.
“In or about March
of 2003, Peace after consulting with Vick about the losing female pit
bull’s condition, executed the dog by wetting the dog down with water
and electrocuting the animal,” the indictment said.
It also said
after losing two fights that month against one competitor, “Vick
retrieved a book bag from a vehicle containing approximately $23,000 in
cash,” which was given to the winning owner.
According to the
indictment, there was a “rape stand,” which it described as “a device
in which a female dog who is too aggressive to submit to males for
breeding is strapped down with her head held in place by a restraint.”
I said, dog fighting is not a pretty picture. And one of the NFL’s
picture-perfect passers could have passed on this nonsense.
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