Monday, September 20, 2010

The Lions let me down

I like watching football, but I usually don't expect much from our Lions. And I wasn't expecting much of Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles either, but I was hoping with every bit of my heart that they'd pull out a win against the Eagles.

It was Michael Vick's first time as a starting quarterback since he was suspended from the league due to the dog fighting conviction.

Had the Lions beat Vick upon his return as a starter, it would've been such a sweet little victory for me.

Sure, Vick had his punishment. And sure, Vick is a talented football player. Lots of people just want to forget about this dog fighting blemish in his history and let him move back into the NFL starlight. And it appears that's exactly what will happen. His performance yesterday was good and the announcers were even predicating that at some point, Vick will be back in a permanent starting position with some team.

But I just can't get over what he did to those dogs. I can't help but think of how poor Rose suffered, her internal organs slowly seeping out because someone had kicked her in the stomach hard enough to break her body cavity. And how she suffered and suffered, the pain increasing over time until she could no longer walk. The poor dog suffered alone, no one there to stroke her or care for until the very last moments of her life.

I can't help but think of the dogs were hung, drowned or shot because they weren't game enough. I can't help but think of the female who had all her teeth removed so she didn't attack the males she was forced to mate with. And I can't forget all the dogs who were found to be not aggressive, but just scared — so scared they could barely bring themselves to move, frozen in fear of a world they'd never seen before.

One of the announcer's said Michael Vick was redeeming himself with how well he played football yesterday. Really? What is he being redeemed for? Nobody ever said Michael Vick was bad at playing football. But certainly, he was bad at owning dogs. In fact, I can hardly think of a worse dog owner in the NFL's history.

I don't want to hear about Michael Vick's redemption. Not when some of his dogs are still out there, still trying to overcome the intense fear Vick caused them to live with.

I can accept that Vick was punished, he's served his time and now he gets a second chance.

But that doesn't mean I have to forget about what he did. And certainly, I'd have jumped for joy if the Lions had crushed Vick's attempt to "redeem himself."

Of all the times the Lions have let us down by losing games, yesterday's loss was a bigger let down for me than the others.

Learn more about what happened to Michael Vick's dogs:
Want to receive a free copy of Jim Gorant's The Lost Dogs: Michael Vick's Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption? Email me ( with your name, address and phone number by Wednesday, September 29. One winner will be selected at random on September 30 and the book will be shipped to the winner's address.

Also, check out last week's review of this fantastic book — featuring videos of the rescued dogs and a photo of Rose, the dog mentioned above. Click here: Review of Lost Dogs book

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