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Burnett's Urban Etiquette

Friday, August 24, 2007

Michael Vick is a skinny blond addict

It's official now, or will be in a few days: Michael Vick is guilty. Sort of. So feel free to bash him now.

He's poised to cop pleas next week to some wrong doing, but in the usual manner curiously reserved for people who can afford the best attorneys, it appears he won't actually have to plead guilty to the worst of what he was accused of - dog fighting, dog murder, etc. It looks like he'll get to plead to something like conspiracy, and violating interstate commerce laws, etc.

Maybe he'll get a year-and-a-half in prison, maybe a little more, maybe less. One thing's for sure. He'll serve a lot less time than if he wasn't rich and famous and hadn't had the best lawyers arguing on his behalf. The rich and famous part wouldn't be as relevant if it wasn't tied to the best (meaning high-priced) lawyers part. But who are we kidding? It would have been refreshing to see him step up and say "I did it. I didn't think about the harm, the foul, etc. But I did it. I allowed dog-fighting and executions to go on on my property. I watched the fights. I gave money to finance the fights and back the gambling element of it....I was wrong. No excuses. I'll take my lumps." To be fair though, in his position I guess I'd have tried to get a deal too. I'm pretty sure I'm not noble.

So anyway, Michael Vick has become Paris Hilton. Actually he has become Nicole Richie. Lindsay Lohan. He is rich and famous and has managed to secure a fraction of the punishment his behavior calls for. He has become another symbol of irresponsible privilege getting away with "murder." What the hell? Do you have to eat a live baby on a plate made from endangered elephant tusks to actually get a substantial punishment if you're young, rich, and famous in this country? If I ever decide to misuse the great pimp-slap of justice I'm either gonna go to Los Angeles to do it or I'll try out for a pro sports team. That way I'll be assured at least a ticker tape parade on my way into jail and on my way back out an hour-and-a-half later.

Thank God I'm unable - and unwilling to try - to picture Michael Vick in high heels, drunk, with a breast accidentally falling out of his shirt, or a drawerless butt cheek peeking out from under his skirt, or crack rocks falling out of his pocket, or crashing his car into a tree, or speeding with his lights off the wrong way up a one-way street.

But he is now a member of the sisterhood. He is a Lohan, a Richie, a Hilton. Even after he gets out of prison (if he goes). I'll never look at Vick the same again, because he'll look like a skinny blond woman to me.

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  • I don't think a lawyer, (let alone a high-profile one) worth his salt would allow a client to admit that he did it. It just goes contrary to how lawyers work.

    By Blogger The Sarcasticynic, at 10:59 AM  

  • No comment Mr. Burnett.

    By Blogger jali, at 11:04 AM  

  • Oh c'mon Jali. Don't leave me hanging. I wanna know what you think about this. Now, don't get me wrong. It may not be the popular thing to say, but I don't think the guy deserves to be executed even if he did do the worst he was accused of. Abusing animals in my mind is just as bad as abusing babies. Both are helpless. Both depend on grown folks to care for them and treat them right. But I'll still never be someone who equates an animal life with a human life. But if Vick did all they said he did, he should do a few my humble opinion.

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 11:13 AM  

  • Do you think Vick should be punished harder than Ray Lewis was?

    "A judge Monday approved a deal allowing Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis to avoid murder charges and jail time by pleading guilty to a misdemeanor and testifying against two co-defendants."

    No way dude. Vick is young, rich and stupid, but I'm willing to forgive a man for making a terrible mistake with dogs much quicker than a man who makes a terrible mistake with a human life.

    By Blogger captain corky, at 11:43 AM  

  • Captain, I hear ya. But I think the Lewis deal was a travesty. That fool shoud've done time. He held up prosecution of those other guys for a hot minute by adhering to that stupid "no snitching" mantra. I understand he later agreed to testify. And I understand the Lewis didn't actually commit the murder. He was there, apparently. It was a friend of his who did it, etc. But he should have gone away for a long time. As for Vick, yeah he is young and stupid. And I agree he should be forgiven, if he warrants it and demonstrates remorse and turns over a new leaf where animals are concerned. But considering the brutality of the dog killings and the callousness of the whole thing, I'm just asking if a year or 18 months is enough time for Vick. Do you think if this had be Captain Corky or James Burnett indicted for all this dog fighting-related stuff that we'd be facing this sort of deal? Maybe we'd get a deal, but not that sweet.

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 11:52 AM  

  • I am fed up with the way laws are being applied in this country, with the rich and the privileged getting off with next to nothing.

    Paris Hilton. Scooter Libby. Lindsey Lohan. Nicole Ritchie (who spent EIGHTY TWO MINUTES IN JAIL).

    Mike Vick...lock him up and lock him up for max. And I say the same thing about the names mentioned above. If the government is willing to give me slack for the same offenses, then fine. But you know they aren't. You know if I did the same thing as any of the above,then I'm going away and try to earn popularity with my inmates by creating colorful sock puppets. I have no idea what that means.

    Lock them up!!!!!

    By Blogger Stewart Sternberg, at 12:53 PM  

  • What's wrong w/skinny blonde woman?

    Vick is sick.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:13 PM  

  • James, I couldn't agree more. I believe, furthermore, that one who abuses animals will also abuse children.

    I am thoroughly disgusted with the so-called justice system for the rich and famous. It goes against everything I believe in, and has created a whole class of privileged criminals who know they are above the law and comport themselves thus.

    Lindsay Lohan was taped saying that she couldn't be punished because she's a celebrity.

    I rest my case.

    By Blogger heartinsanfrancisco, at 2:31 PM  

  • I wish I could care enough to offer up a thoughtful comment on the Vick plea. But honestly? I am just worn out on the rich and famous and I for at least the next few hours before I go to bed I could care less. It's disgusting to be sure, but sheez, so are all the other crimes that the wealthy and privileged are accused of and get away with.

    By Blogger Queen of Dysfunction, at 9:50 PM  

  • those celebs should be "them that we shall not name."

    just everbody not speak of them again.

    They are only celebs because we let them be.

    spoiled lawbreakers

    By Blogger Pamela, at 3:10 AM  

  • Most people have never seen, up close and personal, what a dog looks like that has died in one of those fights...if it doesn't make you want to send Vick away for a nice chunk of time, I don't know what will. People around here have defended him by saying that dog fighting goes on all over the Hampton Roads area, which it does, but I don't see how that's an excuse. As the police crack down on more dogfighting rings people have started to find puppies and dead dogs in dumpsters. I'm not a PETA fanatic but I can't understand why everyone doesn't agree that torturing and killing defensless animals is not ok. Seems like a no brainer to me.

    By Blogger WNG, at 9:01 AM  

  • I always find it interesting that we all seem to be far more outraged by the high level of representation that rich and famous people get in court than we are by the really crappy and incompetent representation poor people get.

    By Blogger Jay, at 10:53 AM  

  • Sometimes, it does leave one very confused about the way justice is meted out in this country today. Wealth has always equated privilege and sure does that with the legal system, doesn't it?
    We're rapidly becoming a society of no ethics, no morals, no sense of justice anymore too at times -or so it sure seems. I read an article from I believe it was the New York Times in which they had interviewed a higher-up from the NAACP who claimed Vick's case was all nothing but racism. Oh, puleeeze! Give me a break! No one is willing to remember the difference between right and wrong. If the Law says something is banned, illegal, and someone choses to break that law, well somethings, sometimes, are black and white but are not racist either.

    By Blogger Jeni, at 12:33 PM  

  • Ok - here's the link (from a TV interview) and my apologies in that I don't know how to post links in comments so that they highlight.

    Just copy this and paste it in and it is the interview with the NAACP official and why he believes this is all racist.

    By Blogger Jeni, at 12:49 PM  

  • I agree with you. He's getting the best slap on the wrist money can buy. And despite what his supporters may say, no one with the lawyers his money can buy would plead guilty if he weren't.

    By Blogger Lex, at 11:14 PM  

  • The media goes apesh*t for a come-back story but, you know what?

    This would be one come-back I don't wish to see.

    By Blogger M@, at 2:33 PM  

  • I'm just glad I didn't have to worry about drafting him in my Fantasy League! He cost me a playoff spot in 2005!!!

    Actually, throw the book at him. I think those who are rich and privileged should get harsher sentences, because they should know better.

    By Blogger Evil Spock, at 3:56 PM  

  • You know what? On a selfish level, I'm bummed all this happened because Vick is one of the very few athletes I will go out of my way to watch. Maybe I'm just getting old and crotchety but I'm really bored with the drones of todays sports world. Vick, Kobe, Nash, Tiger, Hefty, LT (though there was really only one LT and he was a linebacker--yeah I'm from North Jersey originally), and a small handful I'm forgetting about round out my short list of dudes that will keep me in front of the tube.

    The irony of all this attention, is that Vick isn't even that good. He's great on TV, but in today's NFL, you need a guy that can complete 65% of his passed and not throw picks. And that ain't Mike.

    I truly hope he does what he needs to do to put all this behind him and repair the damage he did. I didn't know much about dog fighting, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't like it. But then again, if someone wants to come along and kill my neighbor's yappy little dog, I'll supply the electricity.

    By Blogger Mitch McDad, at 6:57 PM  

  • I don't think a lawyer, (let alone a high-profile one) worth his salt would allow a client to admit that he did it. It just goes contrary to how lawyers work. ""

    Under Federal sentencing guidelines admission of guilt reduces time.

    And hey--it's more the cult of personality at work here than high priced lawyers doing bang up jobs

    After all---there's more than one celebrity murderer running at large

    By Blogger Turnbaby, at 7:45 PM  

  • I honestly thought I was going to get sick when I heard what happened to dogs that weren't deemed to be "good" fighters.


    By Blogger thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy, at 9:43 PM  

  • Ever hear the country song by Brad Paisley called "Celebrity"? Yeah it's country but the concept fits well. Look up the words to it at least.

    By Blogger Christina_the_wench, at 8:59 AM  

  • I watched Vick's public apology with my little son who USED TO wear Michael Vick jerseys to school. It is disturbing to think a certain percentage of the population is honestly going to be swayed by Michael Vick's "enlightenment" carefully crafted by his overpaid attorneys. Call me a cynic, but I don't believe a man who has been allegedly torturing animals since childhood coincidentally has a religious epiphany as a result of getting caught and losing his job. I hope I am wrong.

    If there is anything good about the Michael Vick story, it is that there is an emerging increased awareness about animal cruelty and animal fighting. There is so much anger about this issue. If we channel it into a positive direction, hopefully, something good can come of it. However...

    I think it is a sad commentary that we, as a culture, are using the Vick story to compare "What's worse?" "What's worse", we ask, "carelessly fathering illegitimate children, or dogfighting?". "Dogfighting or gambling?" "Dogfighting or rape?" "Dogfighting or racism?" "Dogfighting or hateful nationalism?" "Dogfighting or (fill in the blank)....?" The comparisons to dogfighting have been endless.

    Dogfighting is one more piece of evidence our country is in need of a spiritual transformation (please note I said spiritual and not necessarily religious). Animals are sentient beings - they feel pain, and they suffer, just like we do. They are not more important, or less important than human beings, but like human beings, they are important, too.

    Dogfighting pits one dog against another until one of them dies. The survivor gets his flesh torn off, ears ripped off, eyes pulled out, etc., and the reward for being "a winner" is to writhe in pain until the next fight. Enough said. The pictures make my flesh crawl. The losers are tortured, beaten, starved, electrocuted or drowned. For what? Because these poor creatures were unlucky enough to be born a dog!

    Every major faith teaches its followers to be responsible stewards of animals and the Earth. Please help us get the word out that caring for animals, just like caring for people, is an important part of just being a decent person and citizen. If we make this a priority, there will be no more dogfighting horror stories, and no more pointless comparisons of evils. Let us all rise, together, to be better people than we are today, shall we?

    Chaplain Nancy Cronk

    By Blogger Animal Chaplain, at 12:06 PM  

  • Bottom line (besides the obvious heinous nature of his crimes): the NFL states in its own rules that if a player is convicted of gambling that player will be banned for life. Well, one of the charges is gambling and he pleaded guilty, sooooo he should be banned. It's a technicality because I think he should be banned from the League for life because he's reprehensible excuse for a human being, but I'll take the technicality for sure.

    If you'd like to tell the Commish what you think you can email him at

    I'm sure Commissioner Goodell would just love to hear from football fans everywhere.

    By Blogger Melissa, at 7:43 PM  

  • He's looking like a skinny blonde to you now? I get the analogy, but still can't help wonder....Just how many of those pain pills did you take for your ankle?


    By Blogger briliantdonkey, at 11:01 AM  

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