A Michael Vick petition is gathering momentum this week, requesting that the convicted dogfighter be banned from the college campus at the State University of New York that has hosted the New York Jets training camp four of the last five years.
According to Fox News on April 7, the petition, carried on change.org, “shows a graphic picture of a mauled dog next to a photo of Vick, who signed with the Jets in March. The petition refers to Vick as ‘a monster and a disgrace’ and inaccurately asserts that the quarterback has never apologized for his actions.”
The petition was sponsored by SUNY Cortland, and reads, in part:
Michael Vick has recently become a member of the New York Jets football team, which practices on the SUNY Cortland campus. Vick has served a short sentence for bankrolling a dogfighting conspiracy, but animal cruelty charges were dropped in return for his guilty plea. This does not mean, however, that his crimes should be forgotten.
He tortured more than fifty dogs, attaching them to car batteries via jumper cables and throwing them into water to watch them drown, beating and hanging them, slamming their heads and spines into the ground until they died, setting them against each other in brutal fights, rendering them defenseless and using them as bait for training, and more. He is a monster and a disgrace, and has never once apologized. He has even admitted that he would continue to fight dogs if given the chance.
As of the writing of this article, the petition had gathered 2,628 signatures – 5,000 are needed before the petition will be delivered to Erik J. Bitterbaum, President, SUNY Cortland.
The petition’s writer goes on to say that they “love SUNY Cortland, and cannot abide welcoming this sociopath onto our campus with open arms.”
We MUST send the message that we won't be party to the torture of animals by conveniently forgetting what he has done. If we welcome Vick onto our campus, we are complicit in his crimes. – Change.org petition
In 2007, Vick pleaded guilty to a federal dogfighting conspiracy charge. The 34-year-old Vick operated, financed and participated in an unlawful interstate dog fighting venture known as “Bad Newz Kennels.” He served 19 months in a Leavenworth, Kansas federal prison. Vick also surrendered $1 million into an escrow account that was subsequently used to reimburse costs of caring for the dogs after his dogfighting ring was shut down.
The petition says Vick has “never once apologized.” In 2007, Vick issued a lengthy apology, and since then has publicly apologized on several occasions. There is no record of Vick stating that given the opportunity, he would once again be involved in dogfighting. Vick himself is now a dog owner.
The NY Jets signed Vick to a one-year contract last month, where he is expected to compete with Geno Smith as the Jets starting QB. Vick formerly played for the Philadelphia Eagles from 2009-13 after being released from prison.