Saturday, August 15, 2009

Michael Vick, Forgiveness, Humanity and Animals

The Philadelphia Eagles have signed Michael Vick to a NFL footbal contract. My first thought was, "How will Donvan McNabb respond to this? Is this going to upset the delicate team chemistry between coach, players and the team's quarterback?" Second thought: "If anybody would give Michael Vick a second chance, Andy Reid is the guy. He believes in people's ability to change.

Now the drama begins. Dog lovers are in an uproar. "How could they?"

It has been amazing to hear some of the things that are being said about Michael Vick's abuse of dogs. Let me be clear. There is no excuse for the evil, abuse and degradation that Michael Vick and some of his former associates inflicted on animals. It has been well documented and it is sick and disgusting. No animal should ever be subjected to such treatment for the sport and entertainment of human beings.

At the same time, where is the outrage about:
  1. A coach has sex with a woman not his wife in a restaurant after hours.
  2. A coach, the same coach, pays for an abortion. (Rick Pitino)
  3. A ballplayer, beats his wife in public. (Brett Myers)
  4. A ballplayer, kills a man while driving drunk (Dante Stallworth)

Each of these men were also villified (for about two days), but went through either a public confession, counseling or trial and short jail term and was then welcomed back into their respective worlds with relatively open arms.

Notice, I'm not saying that they shouldn't be given a second chance. I'm not saying that they can't be "redeemed" back into the world of civilized society. But let's have some proportionality in our collective outrage.

A man was unfaithful to his wife, has sex in a local bar, disgraces his family, dishonors his wife, betrays the trust the parents put in him to be aroll model and developer of character in their teenage sons, and then we trust him to lead young men as a roll model?

A man beats his wife in public because he loses a baseball game and can't control his temper.

A man kills another human being because he insists on drinking too much and then driving his car. Someone lost a son, a father, a husband because he wanted a another drink!

Aren't all of these worse than Michael Vick. These people hurt or killed PEOPLE.

Has the whole nation bought the lie of PETA founder, Ingrid Newkirk? Has the whole nation now put dogs and people on the same footing? Remember her famous statement:

“When it comes to pain, love, joy, loneliness, and fear, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy.”

Readers, rats and pigs, and dogs are not little boys and girls. They are not human. Little boys and little girls are made in the image and likeness of God. Dogs, and cats, no matter how much we love them, are not.

Killing and torturing a dog for sport or entertainment is wrong and disgusting. Killing a human being, degrading human beings, hurting human beings is worse and should be more disgusting.

The fact that it isn't shows how desperately we need the kind of forgiveness that only God can give.

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