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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

An unlikely source of sympathy in the Vick case

Continuing on today's theme of animal-cruelty cases...

I was talking to my veterinarian last week – with a dog and two cats, I get lots of opportunities – so I decided I’d be the hundredth person that day to ask her what she thought of the Michael Vick verdict. Her response left me gaping.

“I feel sorry for him,” she said.

Excuse me, I said – sorry for him?

“He did some horrible things, but I don’t think he was the mastermind behind the operation at his house,” she continued. “I know this is an easy thing to say about an athlete, but I get the feeling he’s not very bright. Or at least, he seems impressionable – like he has too much money and not enough maturity and he let some people get him involved in this, people who he thought were his friends.”

She went on to say that even with the hideous events Vick was involved in, when she read the last-ditch plea he wrote to the sentencing judge in the case, her heart broke.

“Maybe I’m naïve, but he sounded to me like a little kid who knew he was about to be punished, and felt like he could get out of trouble if he promised never to do it again,” she said.

“If it does anything to stop dog fighting or cruelty to animals, then I’m happy with the sentence. But to see this incredibly gifted person throw it all away like this…that makes me sad. His life is basically over.”

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