The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Vick served time, deserves return

Viewpoint by Keisha McDuffie/reporter

Michael Vick pleaded guilty, served his time (19 of 23 months) and was released in May. Yet controversy still abounds.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has lifted the conditional suspension of Vick’s reinstatement with the Philadelphia Eagles. Vick isn’t going anywhere, except the goal line, so your high blood pressure over his status is affecting only you.

Vick has served his time, admitted to his heinous crime and expressed regret for it.

Denying Vick the right to resume his known profession would not only negatively affect Vick, but taxpayers too. Vick’s return to the NFL provides the means (Vick earned an annual income of $25 million prior to his conviction.)

He’s expected to earn roughly $9.8 million with the Eagles and some incentives over the next two years) for him to be financially responsible for everything from lawyer/court costs to the mandatory funds put forth to provide around-the-clock care for the dogs found on all seven of Vick’s properties, for the rest of their lives.

The recidivism rate in the U.S. is ridiculous. The Bureau of Justice Statistics research shows 56 percent of persons released from prison were re-arrested within three years. Of those rearrested, more than half returned to prison. 

One of the most difficult adversities felons face is finding employment. Unable to find honest work can result in their doing whatever they can to survive, often leading to criminal acts.

Vick may seem more fortunate than the next criminal, but nowhere does it say because of his tax bracket he deserves less of a second chance to live his life as an upstanding and contributing member of society.

John Goodwin, manager of animal fighting issues for the Humane Society, said the U.S. has an estimated 40,000 professional dogfighters in addition to 100,000 people involved in “street fighting” – informal dog fights.

So if still harboring hard feelings, try to direct that negative energy into constructive action. Get involved, research the requirements and stipulations for having Vick speak to this community.

Educating people, like Vick, who have been exposed to this kind of entertainment since their childhood is a great place to start.

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