NAACP on Vick and African American celebs in general. Huh?

http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/law/08/22/vick/index.html

I’ve really started wondering if there will ever be a high-profile (aka celebrity) African American criminal that the NAACP won’t go to bat for. It seems as if any time an AA celeb (movies/music/sports/politics) gets into trouble, no matter how bad or how red handed they may be caught, the NAACP is in the media issuing statements along the lines of “He’s not guilty, it’s racist to think he is” at first, then when they are proven guilty, or even worse, admit guilt outright, they come out calling for leniency or in Vicks case "“In some instances, I believe Michael Vick has received more negative press than if he would’ve killed a human being,” White said. “The way he is being persecuted, he wouldn’t have been persecuted that much had he killed somebody.”

I guess I just don’t understand why, even when race clearly has 0% to do with anything, and the criminal was caught red handed and admits their guilt, the NAACP, or Revs AS and JJ for that matter, even feel the need to get involved and issue “statements”. Rarely see that type of “jumping to the defense” for us white males.

Nice job misrepresenting the story. This was about what hapens once he serves his punishment. They are not “calling out for leniency”, they are asking for him to receive the same treatment as other convicted felons have received - like Michael Irvin (just inducted into the Hall of Fame), Leonard Little, who actually did kill a person and is still playing, Christian Peter, who played six years after being convicted eight times in seven years, mostly for assault against women, and fellow Nebraska Cornhusker Lawrence Phillips.

Spare us the outrage - shouldn’t he expect the same treatment everyone else gets?

I didn’t see anything in that article that made a big deal of racial issues. There really wasn’t even an implication in the quotes that they provided. White’s (head of the Atlanta NAACP chapter) statement seem to express concern over how the NFL will handle punishment of Vick due to the high profile nature of the case. His main point is that Vick should not be banned from the NFL for life which is an understandable argument, whether I agree with it or not. There was no call for leniency, just a call for his punishment not to be excessive. Where is the racial emphasis in anything he said?

As for the NAACP, they are a media driven organization that thrives on publicity. They will do what they feel is necessary to get their name attached to marquee racial issues no matter what. Sometimes the issue is not as big as they hoped but thats what happens when you gamble I guess. Their relentless focus on publicity is why I am not particularly fond of the organization.

While he didn’t give a very accurate representation of the story, I do wonder why the NAACP feels like it has to get involved in this controversy. Race can be a factor in people’s feelings about Vick, and supposedly this issue is dividing people along race lines, but there’s no racial component here - unlike, say, the Imus controversy. I can’t think of any way what happens to Vick affects what happens to African-Americans around the country. He’s not being deprived of his legal rights. “Should the NFL ban him?” is a legit question, in my mind.

Also a good question, but is the NFL really required to tolerate one screwup because it’s tolerated others? Wouldn’t it be better if they actually dealt with these things instead of overlooking them?
Looking at your list, by the way, I think one can see some sense in White’s comment about Vick being better off hurting a person.

I’m sorry, I didn’t realize that Irvin, Little and Peter still had endorsement deals, which is a part of what the NAACP is harping about. And what you are saying here is that the NFL hasn’t banned convicted felons before? If they have then banning Vick would be “treating him the same” just as much as not banning him. I didn’t say one way or another whether or not he should be banned.

The point here is to let the man lie in the bed he made, by himself, and let the NFL decide what they want to do with their employee, no commentary needed from these groups.

What you are saying makes sense if White was just speaking as R.L. White, citizen, but he’s not. He’s speaking as a representitive of the NAACP whose sole purpose in life is to ensure the (supposedly) fair treatment of colored people. White’s involvement is based solely on the fact that Vick is black. If he was a white guy White would not be commenting on this matter.

The fact that the NAACP is speaking about this at all turns it into a race issue.

There’s no denying that the story has gotten extraordinary publicity – the lead story on CNN a number of times. I think what the NAACP is arguing is that there’s a disproportion between the amount of attention Vick got and the seriousness of the crime.

And as to that, I feel like there’s a cultural difference between African Americans and white Americans around attitudes to dogs generally. As the CNN article reports, “White also said he didn’t understand the uproar over dogfighting, when hunting deer and other animals is perfectly acceptable.” He’s got a point, it seems to me. Going gaga over dogs is very much a white cultural trait.

But I’m curious whether people agree with me about that.

I think the difference is that when we hunt deer, or elk or whatever, most hunters (even black ones, of which I’ve known a few) try to kill quickly and humanely when possible. Granted sometimes an animal will bleed out but normally once incapacitated the hunter will put the animal down in as painless of a way as possible. Normally the animals are eaten, in the place of bred cattle that would have been eaten anyway. And they are limited in the number of animals that can be killed by one hunter in a certain season.

Vick and his homies used techniques like drowning dogs in 5 gallon buckets of water and electrocuting them to death, when they weren’t shooting them in the head with their piece. These dogs were treated horrifically all the way up to their dying breath. Starved and beaten to make them more vicious. Tied to truck axels in the woods for who knows how long. I don’t think he ever ate any of the dead dogs, though I could be wrong and from the sounds of it, they killed alot of dogs out there at Bad Newz Kennelz.

These are the things that I think make the comparison moot, though I realize for some that may not be the case.

I can’t help but thing that if this was a White dogman, that there wouldn’t have been anywhere near the coverage, even if he was a famous athlete.

I don’t know about a “white cultural trait”, I’d just say there’re a jillion more white dog lovers (because there are plenty of black dog lovers and plenty of whites who aren’t). I’d use the cockfighting analogy. It’s the same thing, but nobody would care.

Simply by issuing the statement, the NAACP made it a racial issue. Which, I am sure, was exactly thier plan. Prior to that, we had this potential NFL great QB (who happened to be black) exhibiting incredibly cruel behavior toward dogs. What should happen. Should he go to jail? Should the NFL take him back afterwards?

Now we have a black male being convicted before all the facts are in. Oh, what’s that, he confessed? Well, sometiimes its wise for a black man to confess instead of allowing himself to suffer under the boot of the white justice system. Don’t rush to judgement. Give the man the benefit of every doubt.

I say, fuck Vick and fuck the whining media whore from the NAACP.

Well, which is it: a racial issue or not a racial issue?

Believing that animals should be treated humanely is not “going gaga” over them.

Great debating skills on display here. Many posters like to base there arguments on facts, but this debate is just the rantings of a … ranting person.

I admit to providing an impassioned resucitation of the facts, particulalry my post in total. You provided your take, I provided my take. I see both as true, by the way.

Do you deny that the NAACP truned it into a racial issue? Do you deny that this is what they do time and again?

“Sometimes the issue is not as big as they hoped but thats what happens when you gamble I guess.”

Personally I don’t really see this as a racial issue in the eyes of the public. If you look at what happened, this could have been significantly more volatile. Instead, you have a very different situation. This was not a case where one of Vick’s dogs got out and attacked a neighbor only to have him accused of being involved in an interstate dogfighting ring. Instead, the case appeared to be rather meticulously investigated, with the property having been thoroughly investigated and background information having been gathered on the fights. The accusations were presented with a great deal of convincing evidence and nothing about this case looked promising for Vick. Despite the public outrage and our (the American public’s) general guilty until proven innocent reaction, it never even looked like people were out to get Vick. That is why you did not hear many people leaping to his defense. Bottom line, you have a black quarterback, who in the eyes of many revolutionized the position, accused of some very serious crimes. Instead of vehemently defensive average black citizens, jumping to his defense you have a handful of outspoken individuals on each side. A few of black folks saying that dogfighting is part of black culture (ignorant statement but its been said) and a handful of whites pre-objecting to anticipated outrage over the conviction of a high profile black athlete. Both of these sides are few in numbers and to me they look ridiculous. The general reaction from the public, at least the public that I interact with, has been that he is an idiot who deserves what he gets. This reaction transcends the color line. When I hear a strong media defense of his actions that does not come from someone using an alias that cannot form coherent sentences, then I might begin to believe that this is a racial issue.

My point in my earlier post was that the NAACP jumps on anything they perceive to be a racial issue, whether or not that is the case. I do not believe that they successfully turned it into a racial issue because other people are not really following their influence.

This is not a racial issue, no matter how hard people try to make it one. It is a criminal issue about animal cruelty. Vick was not charged with being black, he was charged with taking part in a dogfighting operation. I don’t care if he is white, black, rich, poor, athlete or clumsy oaf. The charges revolve around dogfighting. Take race out of the picture.

As far as any future career in sports, whatever. The NFL can take him back. I can choose to not attend any NFL games or buy any stuff endorsed/royaltied (?) or NFL “logoed” (?) then. It’s their league and their players, it’s my ticket money.

I don’t want to hijack this into a debate about hunting, but at most I think this is a matter of degree and not a big difference. Killing an animal for fun is pretty much killing an animal for fun, even if you eat it afterward. I see the cruelty difference, but do most people care that much about cruelty? It’s distasteful, but I don’t think it’s a huge deal to a lot of people. I think people who dislike hunting think it’s unfair, not cruel, and the majority of people don’t seem motivated enough to do anything about cruelty to the animals they eat. To that extent, it’s mainly because this is about dogs.

No, it isn’t. On the other hand, the way some people have reacted to this news could be legitimately described as “gaga.” And the “gaga”-ness is because Vick is hurting animals that are pets. If there was such a thing as deer fighting or bear fighting and he was doing it, some people would definitely be disgusted- but it wouldn’t be like this.

Incidentally, ESPN reported today that the 53 dogs taken from Vick’s house are likely to be put down. People focus on the eight dogs he may have helped kill by hand, but it sounds like he’s partly responsible for the deaths of dozens, if not hundreds, of dogs.

I don’t see how it’s unreasonable to say that after he’s “paid his debt to society” perhaps he should be let back into the NFL provided he demonstrates the appropiate amount of contrition.

One wonders though if he’s smart enough to ever see he’s anything other than someone who’s entitled to do whatever they want.

I think most people really do. It’s why we execute criminals by lethal injection rather than torturing them to death. You’re absolutely right that many animals are slaughtered inhumanely for food, but people feel a much closer kinship with dogs than chickens.