I never knew that Philadelphia was such a righteous city. Sports talk radio is the barometer on many issues. This became more evident as the Philadelphia Eagles signing of Michael Vick began to sink in.
I’ve started this piece about six times because I’m still ticked off by what I’ve been hearing by the vast majority of callers since Michael Vick was signed. It’s always been the case whether the topic was Charles Barkley, Randall Cunningham, Allen Iverson or Donovan McNabb. You know the guy, Frank from Fishtown – cut from the varsity team for Jaheem from Germantown. Now he has an axe to grind for any brutha with a hint of game.
And Lord forbid if he gets into any kind of trouble.
Now the signing of Michael Vick and animal rights dominates the airwaves and once again the majority of white callers have called in foaming at the mouth, many denouncing the Eagles franchise saying that they will forfeit season tickets etc. You know the typical temper tantrum. For all of the callers that claimed to wave the banner of an abused animal, only a few saw their cause worthy enough to protest at Vick’s first practice on last Saturday.
I wonder if the venom will still be flying amidst the confetti in February if the Eagles won it all. (See Ray Lewis)
It all got me to thinking, were these callers genuinely concerned about animal cruelty or calling to build upon their favorite platform. But I’m not going there – too easy.
We know it’s deeper than dog fighting, it’s deeper than animal cruelty. Example: Have you heard Rick Pitino or Josh Hamilton’s name lately?
Call it the Veiled Sin Approach – Individuals who pass judgment on others because their transgressions remain hidden and unknown to most.
I can go on all day about the contradictions and hypocrisies that I’ve heard – it’s dizzying, at the same time disgusting. Instead, I’ll go to my main sticking points.
1. PETA – A month from now hunting season begins in the state of Pennsylvania, and many are going to go out and hunt deer, elk, bear, and who knows what else for sport – not for food, not for clothing, just for the hell of it. Many of these individuals will have the heads of animals placed in their homes or even have the animal stuffed. Not for food or clothing – for sport. A word for those at PETA: If you want to impress someone, don’t protest outside some fur shop on Fifth Ave or outside some stadium. Try telling a 250lb. man toting a 12-gauge that he can’t go after that 16-point buck he’s been dreaming about more than his wife, then get back to me.
2.Those of the belief that Vick shouldn’t be allowed to earn a living in the NFL? The only financial entity Michael Vick harmed was himself. The NFL and the Atlanta Falcons did pretty well financially last season. Vick on the other hand cost himself millions that he can never make back, (I would cry every night in prison too if I blew that amount of money) Lest we forget paying a mental, physical and psychological debt that none of us can never imagine. Make it through Leavenworth Prison and you deserve a second chance at damn near anything. I guess people are bothered by the fact that he walks back into a gig earning $1.5 million in the NFL. Many see this as a privilege forfeited by his actions, at the same time Vick has earned the right to earn a living - his way of making a buck just happens to come from throwing a pigskin. Get over it.
3. Animal Rights vs. Human Rights. If the family of Mario Reyes had raised hell about Donte Stallworth receiving a 24-day prison sentence for DUI manslaughter I would have no qualms about it because of the human element - a husband, father and grandfather was lost. I won’t get too deep into the abortion issue but RIck Pitino did finance an abortion to hide the fact that he was cheating on his wife. Did any animal rights group question or protest the use of German shepherds as instruments of violence on Blacks and others during otherwise peaceful demonstrations during the Civil Rights Movement.
When animal rights groups come along and try to strong arm organizations, I have a problem with that. So what if no one signed Vick? Would PETA and others still protest or demand a partnership with teams across the NFL? Not a chance. They would be in hiding until something like this happened again. Try fighting for domestic abuse, child abuse, elderly abuse and spousal abuse among many others.
The voices that are really crying out cannot be heard over your senseless barking.