Animals rights groups were dismayed to learn the Michael Vick had been signed by The Philadelphia Eagles. PETA released the following statement on August 13th:
PETA and millions of decent football fans around the world are disappointed that the Philadelphia Eagles have chosen to sign a man who hanged dogs from trees, electrocuted them with jumper cables, held them underwater until they drowned in his swimming pool, and even threw his own family dogs into the fighting pit to be torn to shreds while he laughed. What sort of message does this send to young fans who care about animals and don't want to see them be harmed?
Philly.com reported the Pennsylvanians were worried that the move would give their state a bad rap:
Many said they were concerned that the move would cast a pall over a state in which animal advocates - led by Gov. Rendell, who has three rescue dogs - have fought to improve conditions for dogs, particularly those who suffer in substandard commercial kennels.
A PETA spokesperson wrote in to say that Vick won't be working for them (and they get around to calling him a psychopath, too):
To clarify misleading stories regarding PETA and Michael Vick, PETA withdrew its offer to do a TV spot with Michael Vick last winter when a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) report on Vick's dogfighting activities revealed that he enjoyed placing family pets in the ring with fighting pit bulls and that he laughed as dogs ripped each other apart. PETA believes that this revelation, along with other factors in the report, fit the established profile for anti-social personality disorder (APD), and we called on Vick to have a brain scan to help confirm this. People diagnosed with APD are commonly referred to as "psychopaths." They are usually male, prone to lying and manipulation, often take pleasure in cruelty, and cannot feel genuine remorse, which frequently leads to recidivism. PETA had previously been in talks with Vick's management, public relations, and legal teams about shooting a public service announcement to help combat dogfighting, upon Vick's release from prison. In December, after consulting with psychiatrists, PETA withdrew the offer for the TV spot, and in January, we called on NFL Commissioner Goodell to require that Vick undergo a brain scan and full psychological evaluation before any decisions were made about the future of his football career.
PETA is apparently in talks with disgraced NFL quarterback Michael Vick to be a spokesperson:
"I'm familiar with [the plan]," said Dan Shannon, director of youth outreach and campaigns for PETA. "We have been in discussions with Michael Vick, with his management team, about the possibility of him putting out a public-service announcement with PETA when he's out of jail. We want him to discourage people from taking part in dog-fighting. I can do it until I'm blue in the face and it might not convince anybody. Michael Vick sure can. He can say, 'Look, I did it, I was wrong, and it ruined my career.'"
As you may recall, Vick plead guilty to a dogfighting charge and spent some time in prison. And, of course, PETA let everybody know how they felt about Vick.
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