He’s guilty of bankrolling an illegal dog-fighting — and dog-killing — ring, and he’s going to jail, but Michael Vick will be back playing quarterback in the NFL some day, and he’ll be paid megabucks for it.
That’s the consensus, clearly, in pro football.
“Basically, we’re all whores,” an unnamed NFL general manager told ESPN the other day, “and there’ll be 15 to 20 clubs bidding for Vick after he does his time. We all want better football teams and, regardless of what Vick did off the field, he’s a talented quarterback who’s still relatively young, and we all want players like that.”
That’s reality. We live in a forgiving society. Vick already is on his way back in the minds of many because of his public apology Monday. He showed enough remorse that many have already forgiven and forgotten.
“It was a few dogs,” were the words written to me in an e-mail with the name Murray McLeod attached to it, “get over it.”
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And from Alex Haille: “I doubt you would’ve had the same reaction if Payton Manning or Bret Favre (who both love hunting, by the way) were involved instead of Vick. I can just see how the media would create all sorts of excuses for the all-American boys.”
Seriously, I doubt that. And I also think it’s foolish to compare hunting to dogfighting because, last time I checked, hunting (as much as it rubs me the wrong way) is legal. But dogfighting?
Very illegal, and thank the heavens for that.
• Here’s something that may and probably should bug you: Tim Donaghy, the rogue referee who has admitted his involvement in a point-shaving scandal in the NBA, still might be in line to receive a league pension.
Sources say Donaghy could receive a severance package and $78,000 US a year starting at age 58, or as soon as age 45 with a reduced payout. He is 40.
• NBA star Kobe Bryant has been subpoenaed to testify in a $900-million suit against the Canadian Government.
Among other high-profile figures being called to court by Detroit rapper Jerome Almon are talk-show host Oprah Winfrey, politicians Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell and fellow rappers Diddy and Jay-Z.
The CEO of MurderCap Records alleges in U.S. District Court in Michigan that Canadian immigration officials are guilty of flagrant racial profiling, which, he contends, the celebrities can prove. Almon, whose record label is incorporated in Canada, will testify that, between 1998 and 2004, he was stopped or rejected 117 times while trying to travel between Detroit and Toronto.