I really can’t understand why some of our black athletes continue to put themselves in situations that resemble wrongdoing. Why do they continue to let me and all the other black folk who support them down? Why can’t they understand that their boorish behavior poorly reflects on the entire black community? May be they are cognizant of this, and just don’t care. I would not be surprised considering several of them appear to be mentally, spiritually, and emotionally unconnected to anything outside of themselves. Their lack of reverence for the law and uncontrollable rebellion is a recipe for complete destruction within American society. Think about all the black men you know or heard of who decided to behave this way. What was their fate? Death, incarceration, broke? Which is it?
One may gather that I am speaking of these young men as if they are not humans with flaws just like the rest of us. Perhaps it is my fault that I feel disappointed in Michael Vick and devastated that he is in this predicament. If he was not a famous running-quarterback would I still be devastated by his alleged peccant activity? Perhaps my feelings are a result of me holding Vick to a higher standard.
If Michael Vick is convicted we will have those who will rationalize his behavior and involvement in this horrific criminal enterprise. Some have already stated to me, “We sit and watch men box and fight, and no one says a word. What makes dog fighting so atrocious when we allow men to end up like Muhammad Ali? And, we pay to see it on Pay Per View.” I certainly understand this sentiment. However, I cannot support or tolerate an activity where animals are treated so brutally. The Pit Bull Terriers that are trained to fight do not have a choice. A man with a sane mind does. And, most of these boxers and extreme fight barbarians are of sound mind before they go in that ring to annihilate their opponent. They do not have an animal’s intelligence. These young men and women are able to reason on a human capacity level which is in most cases above the level of a dog’s intelligence. Some of these human beings even pray with traces of madness to beat their opposing competitor and pray to finish the fight “pretty”, which indicates they are aware of their actions. Think about it: praying to knock someone out or have them retreat into submission. What type of sense does that make?
Speaking of making sense out of madness: I can’t stop thinking about the details listed in the indictment against Michael Vick and the other cohorts: Body slamming, electrocution, and hanging of man’s best friend. And, how can I forget about the piece of equipment that was confiscated from Vick’s property that’s used to hold girly dogs in position so male dogs can rape the bearer of canine life?
Disappointment and Devastation.
This is where I am at today. Disappointed and devastated that another brotha is linked to foolishness and sociopathic behavior that not only will possibly terminate his Falcon’s paycheck, but further tarnish the reputation of brotha’s who are trying to stay out of prison and do the RIGHT thing. And, don’t be mistaken Vick has lived a privileged adult life. He is not a victim of America’s institutionalized cruelness towards black men. He is wealthy, was coddled at Virginia Tech, spoiled by the NFL, and supported by major endorsers. But, Mr. Vick could not let go of the thuggery. He had to “stay the same”. Staying the same and refusing to really change his life as a result of his stardom was his miscalculated decision. And now, those who wanted him to remain Michael Vick from “Bad News”, Virginia and not Mr. Michael Vick who has multi-million dollar contracts with the Atlanta Falcons organization, Nike, and Air Tran are about to show him that they never had any intentions to protect him. You would think Michael would understand that when a man’s back is against the wall he more than likely will not “stay the same”. He is going to change to protect himself. Too bad Vick did not consider this. Maybe Vick’s privileged back should have been put against the wall. Then he might know that some form of self-changing is necessary when you have no where or no one to turn to for support or help.
Have I convicted Michael Vick? No, I have not. I still try to believe in what they told me in civics class: innocence until proven guilty. Nevertheless, Michael Vick convicted himself a long time ago. He did so when he failed to take the necessary steps to protect his image. He does this every time he responds to reporters like an ignorant Negro. He did this when he flipped the bird to the fans that adored him. Michael Vick has been making this bed for a long time. The funny thing is it appears he just realized that he needed to project a more acceptable image by cutting his hair. After these outlandish allegations of bestiality he finally gets it. He finally understands that staying the same is not an option when working for the Man.
The NFL will not bail him out of this one. Too many white and black folk love dogs!
Someone please tell Michael Vick it is a privilege to play for the National Football League, and that the league will do any and everything to safeguard their image and reputation.
Written by Muata. Inspired by my Disappointment and Devastation.
An edited version of this commentary was featured as an op-ed piece in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and featured in its original form on CommentaryUSA.com.