Streams

Vick to the Jets; College Athletes as Employees?

Friday, March 28, 2014

Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles waits for instructions against the Washington Redskins on November 15, 2010. (Chris McGrath/Getty)

Jane McManus, reporter for ESPN New York, takes calls from Jets fans on a controversial new member of Gang Green: Michael Vick. The quarterback, who served prison time on charges related to running a dog-fighting ring, has displayed good behavior of late. Plus, we talk about the implications of the ruling by the National Labor Relations Board that football players at Northwestern University are employees of the school and can form a union and bargain collectively.

With Vick on the Jets, are you now a conflicted fan (or not)? Do you think it's about time that college athletes who play on teams that generate millions for their schools should be treated more like employees? Or are you with the NCAA (students first, athletes second)? Post by Brian Lehrer.

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Comments [45]

CM from Long Island

I hope the Jets win the Super Bowl with Vick...just to see how all the "I'm done with the Jets forever" crowd responds.

Mar. 30 2014 04:06 PM
sp from nyc

Excuse my typo--meant to say
3. many humans are far "less" than many DOGS; belonging to a certain species does not confer superiority." (however you define that).

Mar. 28 2014 02:56 PM
sp from nyc

Tom LI:
Wrong on all counts
1. will not return to lauding the brutal, indefensible Jets;
2. veganism is in the service of not contributing to the suffering of sentient beings whenever possible, not about being "elevated above the masses";
3. many humans are far "less" than many humans; belonging to a certain species does not confer superiority." (however you define that).

Mar. 28 2014 02:52 PM
tom LI

And to the Vegans...your diet does not make you more moral or ethical than anyone else! The assertion that ones diet elevates one above the masses is pure nonsense, and yet another American cultural lie of the 21st century!

Militant vegan-ism is akin to the ascetics of spiritual/Religious pursuits. All based on ones own overblown sense of self!

Wheres my bacon!

Mar. 28 2014 02:33 PM
tom LI

Pablo Alto - hits the target dead center.

Many, many people convicted of violent crimes, against animals or humans can be rehab'd. And many are! Many men who once abused women, due to whatever their reasons were, cultural, upbringing, former abuse to them, etc - do good work once rehab'd! Or even women who abused their children, etc...rehab'd!

But the reality of the Vick situation has more to do with people's negative opinions of Pro sports, than what he did or who he might be now!

And to all the now former Jets fans, fine...but the rest of us know we'll see ya back should the team start to win this season with or without Vicks direct help. Yup, you'll be back...

Mar. 28 2014 02:23 PM
tom LI

Sophia - some people grew up in cultures (not involving race!) like farming, ranching, etc, who do not hold an animals life in the high pedestal manner too many Americans now do. Sure they "love" their pets, but its not the same as those make them into placebo-humans. A dog is never a human. And a human is never less than a dog! No matter their crimes or image.

Mar. 28 2014 02:15 PM
fuva from harlemworld

So Vick can never redeem himself enough to be able to legitimately get back on the football field?

Mar. 28 2014 02:04 PM
sophia

Let him play in the South, where all sorts of awfulness can be excused, particularly if a football game is at stake.

If he joins an especially homophobic church as well, he'll probably be a local hero.

Mar. 28 2014 01:55 PM
Scott

This entire group should meet for drinks at the green space.

Mar. 28 2014 01:45 PM
fuva from harlemworld

Okay, sophia, apologies for the lack of clarity. By 'culture" I was referring to the apparent valuation of dog life over, say, chicken life, etc. (and the obliviousness to it). I was also referring to the ignorance of the context in which Vick was raised, where things can easily get twisted under the pressure.
Nevertheless, Vick deserved punishment. Meanwhile, Zimmerman et al. should be in JAIL. And yet Vick went to jail, etc. for what he did to an animal, paid the debt society mandated, and you're positing that he can never be rehabilitated. Should he be jailed for life? Executed?...The big picture is very contradictory.

Mar. 28 2014 01:43 PM
sophia


I certainly didn't defend Zimmerman, and would be delighted to see all his future destructiveness continue to be publicized, and if he ever has the opportunity to collect a huge paycheck from a fan-dependent industry, I'm sure it wouldn't happen without outrage.

I'm not the one who brought up culture you did, and since I am ignorant of what you mean by it, why not BE CLEAR about exactly what you meant?

What's counterproductive is bringing up the suffering of assorted sentient creatures and amorphously defined "culture", instead of the issue at hand, which is putting NY fans in the position of enriching and cheering on an animal abuser.

Mar. 28 2014 01:25 PM
fuva from harlemworld

...And torturing dogs is by no means a black cultural institution.

Mar. 28 2014 12:52 PM
fuva from harlemworld

LET'S BE CLEAR, sophia:

NO ONE is excusing what Vick did. Based on culture or anything else. He tortured sentient creatures. Heinous. The point is, the outrage over this seems largely selective; similar abuse of other sentient creatures triggers less outrage, AND the outraged seem clueless to this double standard.

Furthermore, to condemn Vick for life, after he's served time (meanwhile Zimmerman is driving drunk and selling paintings...) is counterproductive, not to mention ignorant of the context that affected Vick's (unacceptable) worldview, borne of brutal phenomena...

Mar. 28 2014 12:49 PM
sophia

If Vick is going to be defended on the basis of "culture", then let him play somewhere where this is culturally acceptable.

I didn't realize what a POS this guy was until I looked it up because of this show, and maybe Vick's defenders are equally ignorant.

He didn't just fight dogs he personally tortured them, and that deserves the label of sociopathy.

Mar. 28 2014 12:34 PM
sp from nyc

blacksocialist from BKbaby:
Do you really believe that finding premeditated torture and murder of helpless animals is racist? What, exactly, is your point?

Mar. 28 2014 12:26 PM
john from office

BL producers, why are the anti "white" comments allowed to remain on the board, but my comment was removed?? A little PC racism??

Note the "white folk be crazy" comments.

Mar. 28 2014 12:23 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

The meat at a typical super-market, comes from animals that have had far more brutal lives ... What Vick did was wrong but unless one is a vegan. As they say, glass houses.

The Jets have been abusing their fans like animals for 40 years.

Mar. 28 2014 12:20 PM
Helene

Animals are so much more valuable than people in the US. Vicks was punished far more severely for this dog business than a Florida plumber was for killing two elderly sisters while drunk and high - that plumber got a whopping 29 DAYS in jail, and went on with his life, not the least bit ostracized or further punished in his Palm Coast community. Priorities are messed up in the US, thanks Brian Lehrer for reminding us of that!

Mar. 28 2014 12:20 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Ah, John, what next, like cockfighting for Dominicans? What ignorance you speak.

Mar. 28 2014 12:14 PM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

re wmd817 - so now he is to be associated with a child molester. some of you white folk are beyond sad.... just pathetic

Mar. 28 2014 12:09 PM

Perhaps if Vick does poorly we should have him slowly hung to death or drowned. This is not a race issue,...it's a humanity issue. I wouldn't allow a repeat child molester to play on my team, even if he paid his dues.
I will no longer be a Jet fan. I'm very disappointed and upset.

Mar. 28 2014 12:02 PM
john from office

Folks, dog fighting is a "black" cultural thing, so you cannot stop it!! It is another protected right.

Mar. 28 2014 12:01 PM
Chrissy from Uk

I'm not a preachy vegetarian but I wonder how many anti-Vickers are contributing to inhumane treatment of animals through their consumption of meat. I wrestle with this myself as a consumer of eggs and dairy. I say all this to say: people in glass houses! Forgive the man and let him play ball! We are all capable of making terrible mistakes, acknowledging them and moving on with the genuine intention to do better in the future-- and we could ALL do better.

Mar. 28 2014 11:59 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

re donna mulz - this is the kind of mindless dreck that is so baffling, "I don't believe we should pay someone for something he has clearly not gotten past." how do you know this? you are nonsensical...

Mar. 28 2014 11:59 AM
fuva from harlemworld

MODERATOR/ PRODUCERS: Is the ignant comment about "the African brain' appropriate for this message board? At what point are lowlifes (based on the ignorant history) banned?

Mar. 28 2014 11:59 AM
Edith from Huntington, NY

This is not a finished topic, whether sports fans and commentators think it should be or not. One reason it can't die is that sports figures are heroes to many people. Systematic acts of sadism stand apart from any other crimes. I'm not "getting over it." The Jets are gone from our household. Forever.

Mar. 28 2014 11:57 AM
lide from brooklyn

I would be convinced he's changed and genuine if he gave 75% of his earnings to charity.

To football fans who are dog lovers: consider your values and think about whether watching the game is more important than your convictions.

Mar. 28 2014 11:57 AM
donna mulz from Selden, NY

I don't believe we should pay someone for something he has clearly not gotten past. in September my husband and I wanted to adopt a dog, we went to brookhaven animal shelter....there are 181 pitt bulls there...they are so beautiful; yet are treated and behave so cruely...long story short,we too two home $4k later..one dog euthanized the other returned,..are hearts were broken both for the dogs and their victims.....why doesn't he realize what his behavior has propelled, thank you, love the show!

Mar. 28 2014 11:56 AM
Helene

Animals are so much more valuable than people in the US. Vicks was punished far more severely for this dog business than a Florida plumber was for killing two elderly sisters while drunk and high - that plumber got a whopping 29 DAYS in jail, and went on with his life, not the least bit ostracized or further punished in his Palm Coast community. Priorities are messed up in the US, thanks Brian Lehrer for reminding us of that!

Mar. 28 2014 11:56 AM
fuva from harlemworld

Nah, dogs are creatures of God, like cocks, and what Vick did was heinous. But so is cockfighting, bullfighting, etc. Would folk be equally as outraged. Problem here, is that these people who are condemning him for life are clueless to the cultural aspect of this.

Mar. 28 2014 11:55 AM
bdem108 from upper west side

What he did was unforgivable. I will not support his partipation w gang green. His actions post animal killing were a strategic way to get back into the football arena… He murdered animals for disappointing him… society has been much kinder to him than he ever was to an animal.

Mar. 28 2014 11:54 AM

Can people change? I think so. Check this out: http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_reisel_the_neuroscience_of_restorative_justice

Mar. 28 2014 11:53 AM
lide from brooklyn

I would be convinced he's changed if he gave 75% of his earnings to charity.

Mar. 28 2014 11:53 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

so now he is a sociopath? you white folk take the cake.... mountain meet molehill.... pathetic.... you people need to prioritize...

Mar. 28 2014 11:52 AM
Scott

So how should we feel about people that buy their dogs winter coats with full knowledge that a good number of kids in New York go without one?

Mar. 28 2014 11:51 AM
sp from nyc

Repulsive and unforgivable. Torturers do not get a pass, ever. There are no extenuating circumstances. I will never watch the Jets again--they have demonstrated that they have no moral compass.

Mar. 28 2014 11:51 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

what is with white people and dogs? what is the fascination? add a little racism, and viola, you have a much bigger issue than it should be. pathetic

Mar. 28 2014 11:48 AM
oscar from ny

Please god bless Michael Vick for coming to the jets and for messing with those horrible dogs

Mar. 28 2014 11:47 AM
fuva from harlemworld

Wow. What Vick participated in was heinous, like cockfighting. But those who condemn him for life are being excessive, are completely ignorant to the context in which this took place, and ignorant of their ignorance. Gimme a break.

Mar. 28 2014 11:46 AM
Pablo Alto from Brooklyn

It is extremely easy to take shots at Michael Vick. They are well earned as his behavior as a young man was heinous, vicious, and despicable. I was and am disgusted by what he did before, but we are a society that is filled with all types of criminal and personal malfeasance.

Yet, he went to prison paying his debt to society, and becoming bankrupt financially. He has spent much of his time over the past several years working hard to rebuild a his life and supporting organizations that fight for the prevention of cruelty to animal.

No, the irony of this last statement is not lost on me. I am simply stating that people can change for the better if provided the opportunity. Should a person not have the opportunity to transform themselves into some that makes a positive contribution after they have chosen to take a path filled with horrors?

Most people will disagree with my compassion for him--it even confuses me to a point as I love dogs and miss my Cindy--she died last year--terribly. It is my hope that Mr. Vick does well as a Jet, and continues to forge a life that has a positive impact. The alternative is to wish him ill and I am not sure that does anything good for anyone.

Mar. 28 2014 11:42 AM
Pablo Alto from Brooklyn

It is extremely easy to take shots at Michael Vick. They are well earned as his behavior as a young man was heinous, vicious, and despicable. I was and am disgusted by what he did before, but we are a society that is filled with all types of criminal and personal malfeasance.

Yet, he went to prison paying his debt to society, and becoming bankrupt financially. He has spent much of his time over the past several years working hard to rebuild a his life and supporting organizations that fight for the prevention of cruelty to animal.

No, the irony of this last statement is not lost on me. I am simply stating that people can change for the better if provided the opportunity. Should a person not have the opportunity to transform themselves into some that makes a positive contribution after they have chosen to take a path filled with horrors?

Most people will disagree with my compassion for him--it even confuses me to a point as I love dogs and miss my Cindy--she died last year--terribly. It is my hope that Mr. Vick does well as a Jet, and continues to forge a life that has a positive impact. The alternative is to wish him ill and I am not sure that does anything good for anyone.

Mar. 28 2014 11:41 AM
john from office

Animals need people of good will to speak for them, they cannot speak for themselves. People like Vick should be shunned, the acts he did were inhuman, if he did those same acts to people he would be on death row.

The Law sees animals as property, so he was let off with a slap on the wrist, the Jets are in for a problem. I will not be watching.

Mar. 28 2014 11:25 AM

Michael Vick personally tortured animals to death. He enjoyed it. That is my definition of a monster, and that kind of psychopathic personality does not change.

I don't want to contribute to that kind of person in any way.

So I'm boycotting not only the Jets but also Nike, and I urge everyone who doesn't want to pour their cash into the pockets of a dog torturer and killer to do the same.

Mar. 28 2014 11:25 AM
Izzy from United States of Dumberica

Ray Lewis was an accessory to a double murder and he was treated like a king. Vick, like most of these NFL guys, is the scum of the Earth. Why the selective outrage?

Mar. 28 2014 10:55 AM
John from Bklyn


Vick tortured dogs to death for fun.

Do your emotions let you root for his team? Goodbye Jets, I’m gone.

Mar. 28 2014 10:35 AM

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