Consider This: Michael Vick - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Consider This: Michael Vick

If nothing else, the indictment of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick for operating a dog-fighting business has shone a spotlight on a cruel and barbaric "sport" that appears to be more widespread than we thought.

Nothing draws attention to a cause like celebrity involvement, so Mr. Vick has inadvertently boosted the efforts of animal rights organizations to raise public awareness and eliminate this inhumane practice. It also demonstrated how few people know about our justice system.

People ask, "How can they suspend him? What about his rights? Isn't he innocent until proven guilty?" Yes, he is; but listen up! "Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" are his inalienable rights, and due process, a speedy trial, knowing his accusers and proper legal representation are his constitutional rights. No one is trying to take those away.

Quarterbacking a football team is not a right. It's a privilege, and frankly, one this superstar, regardless of the outcome of his case, no longer deserves.

Michael Vick may be a talented player, but he's also a contracted employee. Under the NFL's personal conduct rules, the league has the right to suspend him even if he's not convicted of a crime.

Remember, this is the same player who was stopped from boarding a plane in January because he was carrying a water bottle with a secret compartment containing a substance that smelled like marijuana. Ultimately, no charges were filed, but it did beg the question, "Why would he have a water bottle with a secret compartment in the first place?"

In the end, Vick may be acquitted of these charges; his only is crime that he hung out with questionable characters. Ironically, that outcome would make the league's actions just as appropriate. They told him what he should have told his friends a long time ago, "You're not wanted around here anymore."

That's what we think. Tell us what you think.

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