Michael Vick Reinstated, But Untouchable

Christopher MaherCorrespondent IJuly 28, 2009

Sussex, VA - NOVEMBER 25:  Protesters hold signs outside Surry County Circuit Court where suspended Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick after plead guilty on two felony counts connected to dog fighting on November 25, 2008 in Sussex, Virginia. Under a plea agreement, Vick, who is currently serving a term in prison for federal dog fighting charges, will serve one-year of probation for the state charges. He is scheduled to be released on July of 2009.  (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images)

I'm a dog lover. My rescue dog, a mix of black Lab and Rottweiler, is the most loving gentle giant I've ever had the honor of calling my best friend. 

Nonetheless, Roger Goodell did the right thing in giving Michael Vick a limited reinstatement.

As much as I would love to see my 110-pound dog clamp his jaws on Vick's testicles for his reprehensible actions, Vick has done the crime and done the time, and thus, paid his debt to society according to our court system.

Goodell did the right thing in terms of it being the smart thing. Sometimes, the toll on the high road is too expensive, and any gain in public relations from an iron fist could have brought a lawsuit for restraint of trade.

Goodell, wisely, has allowed him to play after sitting out a suspension.

Now, let's get into the free market and the real world.

What NFL team would touch him?

We Americans love our dogs, make movies and TV shows about them, name sports teams and cheering sections after them, and consider them as parts of our families.

They are.

If even the slightest Internet rumor showed any NFL team's interest in Michael Vick, there would be picketers in front of that team's offices. That team's switchboard would be flooded, and their website would likely crash.

What would happen if a team actually signed Vick?

Season ticketholders would threaten to cancel, and some would actually do that. No small consideration in this economy.

Peyton Manning doesn't greet you after a long day at work. Fido does.

In many states, convicted sex offenders cannot live within so many feet of a school, church or playground after their release. 

Thus, their sentence continues long after prison. Right or wrong, those laws are on the books, and no one wants a sex offender near their child's school.

A bad night on the road, resulting in a DUI conviction, can exclude people from many professions. 

Michael Vick wrote his own perpetual sentence.

The memory of his "Bad Newz Kennels" operation remains an indelible stain of malicious, premeditated animal cruelty the vast majority of Americans cannot abide.

I doubt even Al Davis would have anything to do with Michael Vick.

Sorry, Michael, but that's the Bad Newz.

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