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Your Call: Michael Vick Speech Sincere? August 28, 2007

Posted by Marquis Chapman in Football, NFL, Sports, Video, Your Call.

My friends and I have mixed feelings about the speech Michael Vick delivered yesterday.  Some of us tend to believe that he truly was sincere about everything he said, while others did not believe one word that came out of his mouth.  I personally believe that the speech was somewhat sincere. Based on the other speeches we’ve heard in the past by athletes that have been in trouble, that really seemed like it was from the heart.  The only issue I had with the speech was the common  “I found God” part of the speech.  It seems like everyone turns to God when they get into trouble.  What did you think?  It’s your call.






1. emmettjones - August 28, 2007

I think the apology was more sincere than not. I mean, it goes back to the fact that he didn’t read from anything, and that he gave the speech himself. I think that definitely adds to the level of sincerity. And he also seemed to be ready to accept the consequences of his actions. On the other hand, there was never anything saying that he actually regretted the actually killing of the dogs, he just mentioned that dog fighting was wrong. In the end, whether he was truly sincere will be based on his other actions that happen later; this apology was just the beginning.

2. W.B. - August 28, 2007

I agree. I didn’t expect him to be so clear and thorough with his apology… maybe because he set it up by saying he wasn’t a good public speaker… but nevertheless his speech seemed heartfelt. Like you said, the only thing that left a bad taste was his “I found Jesus” line. I was just waiting for a smirk because he had to have notice how cliche that was…

3. boxwatcher - August 28, 2007

I didn’t buy it. If Vick was really sincere he would have truly owned up to his role in everything. In the plea agreement he signed he said he received no money from gambling, I’m supposed to believe he never won a bet? Also he admited to only being present with the other defendants when the dogs were killed. He never actually said he killed a dog, I think this is also B.S. I know he is trying to protect himself from future charges from the state of Virginia, but if he really wants to us accept a “sincere” apology he should own up to all of it. He is just saying what he thinks everyone wants to hear.

4. hitbyapitch - August 28, 2007

I think that stuff was sincere as a guy who has sex with a large ugly woman while drunk and tells her he’ll call her later. The only smart thing he’s done in this whole mess is capitalize on the fact that as soon as you say “Jesus” people become incapable of rational thought.

5. Sportsattitude - August 28, 2007

I think he was sincere. The trouble I have with it is it did not come weeks ago when this all first came to light. Had he owned up to his part in the illegal activities, not lied to anyone and offered to make amends proactively, he’d be in a lot better shape with the government, the NFL, the judicial court…and the court of public opinion.

6. Jason Wilson - August 28, 2007

I think he played the religion card to early.. Most people in his position dont find God until they have been in jail.. But thats just me.. I do believe that he had some notes in his hand, because the interview they showed on ESPN last night, from the side angle he appears to be holding a napkin, or peice of paper! Im torn on this, Id like to believe he was finally being honest.. but its also a case of, alittle to late 🙂

7. K.C. - August 31, 2007

I thought he was contrite until he pulled the “God Card” when will atheletes learn that finding God when youre in trouble just never sounds fourthright.I think we will be able to tell in about two years if Mike Vick was sincere has matured and changed his ways.

8. D.C. - September 3, 2007

Michael Vick thanked God for his talent. He thanked God when he got drafted into the NFL. He thanked God when he made a great pass. He thanked God when he gave interviews. With so much God in his life, how did he forget – “Thou shalt not kill” not to mention lie? How convenient that he found God again in his apology. Did he point to the sky in reference to God during his apology? Seems fishy to me. Did I mention thou shalt not lie, again?

9. Marquis Chapman - September 3, 2007

Athletes always say they’ve found God when they get into trouble, not realizing that they instantly become walking contradictions.

10. Mr. Insider - September 3, 2007

Mr. Insider – September 3, 2007
Vick is a symbol for what real dysfunctional thinking is all about. If he had any depth or character, he would not confuse torturing animals with being anything but serious criminal behavior. The pathetic excuse some are using is that this is a racial issue. folks just care Not from where I stand, nor from where my African American friends stand. If Brett Favre had commited these cruel and dehumanizing acts, he would be thought of the same way. If Mickey Mouse was the felon, he/it would be equally ‘the bad guy’. Vick is a junior league monster and an Olympic class moron. Any mental health professional will tell Dimwit that torturing animals is a major step towards being able to commit other heinous crimes, like hurting human animals. I can give you simple 100% odds that Vick will never play again. Talked to a coach recently who explained that Vick ‘is so over just because of the horror’ he made millions feel. ‘The NFL will not even remotely consider his playing ever again’. My hope for Vick is that he gets the same treatment in prison that he forced on helpless fellow creatures. He likely will from some major league bad guys. For those of you who think Vick is being treated wrongly, try to grad some basic moral good sense and character. You are a pathetic and ignorant if you think this is a black vs. white issue. Bye Bye to $180 million (inc. endorsements) Michael Vick. Hope torture was worth it. Oh, don’t forget the soap for your busy showers. You will be having some bigtime company. Your version of God will be there right with you, so be prepared to scream for help just like those Golden Retrievers did while being torn apart by Pitbulls for practice.

11. W.B. - September 5, 2007

for the most part mr. insider, i understand where your coming from. I have noticed, however, that the race card was played ONLY momentarily and now the debate is centered on the idea that dogfighting is a deep-southern, cultural practice, not neccessarily a “black” practice, so there’s no need to argue so strongly against the idea of white vs. black or racism. its not the prominent issue. Saying that Vick has a “lack of depth or character” seems too hasty a claim. If you consider the possible environment that he grew up in and the exposure to dogs fighting each other or being trained and conditioned in a violent manner, there’s no way for Vick to have fully understood the gravity of this “sport”. If his childhood involved exposure to dog fights then, wouldn’t you expect him to be somewhat numb to the violence involved? The “lack of depth or character” you claim Vick has should be based on the way he handles this matter, now that he’s been confronted. I understand your anger over the violence, its disturbing, but his sentence and being suspended indefinitely from the team seem to be blind and immediate responses, not considering any possible reasons for why Vick was involved in this abuse. He was part of something serious and, up until now, most likely did not know that it was so punishable (by the rest of the nation, and not by his hometown). How do you punish someone for beliefs they gained while being raised? … and mr. insider, another hasty assumption, Vick clearly saw these dogs as a sport, there’s no way you could argue that he would turn on to “hurting human animals”. Too far a stretch, an athlete would value a human body, naturally.

12. Mr. Insider - September 6, 2007

OK WB: Some thoughtful insights from you on my ‘rant’. Let me toss one back at you that I feel is relevant. IF we excuse away or minimize the evil or insensitivity that a Vick or either of us might exhibit and act out based on our upbringing, our local cultural standards and what we have been fed as a value system, where do we stop with that perspective? Is drug dealing OK because I grew up in an inner city with poverty around me, and the cool guys with $ were drug dealers? Is that a valid excuse for me getting children hooked, into prostitution and a hopeless lifestyle? Is it OK for me as a Muslim who was taught in Madrassas (Islamic religious schools) to commit acts of terror because I was taught that Westerners are evil, and that I will go to my Islamic heaven where virgins and grapes await me once I die in a terrorist act against you, the Westerners? Is it OK for me the southern white plantation owner to have slaves just because others do, and it is a mark of wealth and upper class in my state and states around me? I am making stark comparison here, and obviously Vick did not do a crime as bad as the ones I listed. You can list a dozen more, too. The only thing I am sure about is that Vick would probably not hurt his OWN body. I have seen plenty of athletes (some in jail and some got lucky) like Ray Lewis, Lyle Alzado and Denny McClain hurt people and sometimes themselves badly. OK, my real point (probably too wordy here) is that I feel it is very risky to excuse in ANY way criminal behavior and ugly actions by saying we just did it because it’s what we grew up with, what we thought was just fine and what was in our culture. If we go down that road, we make excuses for more and more antisocial and destructive behavior by any one of us. Seems like a really slippery ethical slope.
But hey, I just have my opinions and look forward to hearing you offer your thought. I am always open to broaden my views. Only way I grow and learn. Thanks!

13. W.B. - September 7, 2007

Good point! I hadn’t stopped to think of what my ideas implied. All those examples made it tough for me to stand by my own opinion! I guess the one point I was trying to make was that we seem to have pulled all the cards out on Vick by giving him the possibility of a long sentence and also the possibility of losing his spot on the team. I’m not saying he should be excused for his dog fighting, which I do believe was a crime, but I do think his punishment should not have been so immediate and so harsh. I just felt that they looked at his situation for its face value and didn’t really want to see where his actions stemmed from. I also feel that, as a public figure and one of the first to caught up in this type of crime, he was used as an example of harsh consequence. I don’t understand why the celebrities on PETA’s hitlist such as J-LO and Beyonce don’t get as much punishment, let alone media scrutiny for knowingly allowing animals to be skinned alive and killed once they’ve made their “contribution”. After all, the announcements of the extent of Vick’s punishment came only after it was determined he “had knowledge” and “was aware” of the fighting. So, therefore, J-LO… Beyonce… where’s their punishment? That was a whole other idea that just occured to me, but back to the points you made, I understand what you’re saying. An excuse based on upbringing would excuse so many other culturally based crimes. I don’t intend for Vick to be excused and I would certainly not excuse any of the examples you gave; they have been harmful to our society, I just want to see a fair delivery of punishment. Fair, based on “mens rea” and any possible upbringing that could have distorted societal norms. I don’t want Vick to be excused, just to be punished fairly. Thanks for your response, very valid.

14. Mr. Insider - September 12, 2007


Good comments. I agree that my emotional disgust and gut level hatred of someone who is cruel to animals flavored my notes. Vick is not a monster, and he may well be taking a hit for others who are equally guilty. That is often what happens around any swing of a pendulum relating to a crime or crime-type. My real point was one you responded to that we really need to be cautious in excusing criminal behavior just because ‘aw gee, he/she grew up with that stuff and did not know the difference’. Beyond that point, probably what you said is right on the money. HOWEVER, ‘Do the Crime, Better be Prepared to Do the Time’. It sounds trite, but lots of basic truths are trite sounding. Also, while I applaud some of PETA’s work, I am not a member. I also think that Vick could have truly reduced much of the disgust and hatred now directed towards him by immediately being honest, confessing, asking for forgiveness and making a $1mil donation to SPCA, etc. His lawyer certainly told him from hour one that he commited a few crimes he could go to jail for.
Being honest after you are forced into it purely from fear of a jury trial and verdict lacks authenticity. But, your points are good ones. And as for being ‘punished fairly’, I really think he is getting off lightly if the judge only gives him a year or so. A jury probably would have given him 10 yrs + for the group of felonies he is accused of. AND, now the state of Virginia may add alot more to the penalties for Vick.

I have spoken to over a dozen pro’s in sports media and coaching (plus a couple of athletes). 100% of them have stated that ‘Vick will never ever play in the NFL again’. They all may be wrong, but it is a strong opinion for obvious image reasons. Different point here, but the man probably cost himself $150,000,000 through his animal cruelty/dog-fighting, etc. That hopefully will stop some of this activity.
Hope so, anyway. Because remember who the TRUE VICTIMS are here. Innocent animals under the control of the human ‘animal’. We are a violent species, lest there be any doubt. Hope to hear more, as the more I read, the smarter I get!

15. FemaleFan - September 13, 2007

Love the dialogue between W.B. and Mr. Insider. Both have very valid points and both make you think about things you may not have considered. After reading both of their comments, I too had to reconsider some of my feelings on this situation and look at it from other points of view. Vick is still guilty as sin, lied and thought he could get away with it. Yes, he should have come clean in the very beginning, apologized and offered to make things right. People would have had more compassion for him if he had done so in the beginning AND if it was sincere. Sad, but I too think his playing days are over. What a shame and a waste of talent. He’ll have a lot of time to mature now. It doesn’t matter if your an animal lover or not, a PETA supporter or not, a Vick fan or not, this topic really gets your blood boiling. We’ll be talking about this one for a long time.

16. Mr. Insider - September 19, 2007

Good analysis FF. The more dialogue on issues like this, the better to make our society less violent and hateful. You hit the proverbial nail on the head. As an animal respecter and lover (remember that we are all animals, just different places on the hierarchy of creation and life), I detest with every ounce of my body what Vick did. He is paying with a loss of $150 million and no career. Plus he will forever be the Poster Child for animal abuse. Nice move Vick!

There may be reasons for his actions, but we cannot accept any excuses for his actions without great risk! The positive to come from this mess MAY be that animal cruelty is brought out into the light of day. I also (as will any mental health professional and most law enforcement folks) contend that if we act inhumanely towards one species on this earth, it is a whole lot easier for us to act inhumanely towards another species – like man! That is simple statistical fact.

17. Diddy - May 1, 2008


18. Diddy - May 1, 2008

I’d like to add, nobody cares about Vick’s apologies or speech. He is a sick person. Nothing can change what he has done. Nobody that has admitted to murder has recieved a slap on the rist. doing 18-24months in Jail sounds like alot (when your actually there, it is a lot of time) but not nearly enough for inhumanity.

BTW people are NEVER sorry for what they have done- THEY ARE SORRY WHEN THERE CAUGHT AND TOTALLY FCKD…. anyone will attest to that. its like “Oh gee Dad I’m sorry I smoked that joint”. What is my punishment? I’m grounded for a month? – “damn if I just didn’t get caught”-this is all people think!

19. bob - November 28, 2010

part of his culture. Does he eat fried chicken every night aswell. lol

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