Hello. Come on in. The daddy writes about current events, literature, music and, once in a while, drops something on you from back in the day to make you pause and ponder, stop and stare, and begin to wonder. Who knows? You may start to pace the floor, shake your head from side to side, then fall down on bended knees in a praying position and cry, "Lawd, have mercy! What is this world coming to?" Check yourself! But this blog is NOT about the daddy. It's about you: your boos, your fam, your hood, your country...our hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow. So let's make a pact: the daddy will put it on the track if you'll chase it down and hit him back. Together, we can definitely take it to another level. Shall we?"

Monday, May 4, 2009

Michael Vick, Tony Dungy and a change is gonna come

"When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free."
--Catherine Porter
"To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you."

Okay, the daddy gets it. Michael Vick, the former great athletic quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons, a former poster guy for the league, and role model to many youth wanting to be a quarterback in the NFL someday, ran an illegal dog fighting operation. Okay, he was even party to the killing of some dogs. All true. But he also expressed remorse for these crimes, was justly convicted for them, lost all of his financial wealth, and, worst of all, lost respect from a public that once held him in such ,high esteem, Yet, now that he is scheduled to be released shortly, many Americans don't want him to go back to making a living by playing in the NFL again. In fact, the head of the NFL, Roger Goodell, doesn't seem to want him to come back to the NFL either. In an AP article (, Goodell admitted that Vick has paid dearly for an egregious crime but said that, before consenting to let him back into the NFL, he wants to be assured that Vick feels "genuine" remorse. Said Goodell:

"At that point in time {when Vick is released}, I will want to meet with Michael, I will want to meet with his people, I will want to meet with other professionals to understand: does he understand the mistakes he made and is he genuine and have remorse for those actions and is he prepared to handle himself differently going forward. That will ultimately be my decision." In other words, he wants to do his own trial on Vick. And so do others.

The same article suggests that Vick's re-entrance into the NFL would likely serve as a "lightning rod" for animal rights organizations. It sounds likes these folks would be just fine with Vick staying in jail for life. Let's lay it down in the field then string up a flag pole and keep it on the real: when it comes to Michael Vick, most of white America is still hatin' on a brotha and they are either unable or unwilling to bring themselves to forgive. But, fortunately, Tony Dungy, a good man, and a great human being, is stepping into the frey.

Dungy says he wants to talk to Vick before he is released from prison. Vick is scheduled to be released from prison on July 20, but could be transferred to home confinement in Hampton, Va., as early as May 21. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Dungy is scheduled to meet with Vick on May 5 at the federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas, where he is serving 23 months for his role in a dog racing operation.

Tony Dungy, remember him? He's the former great football player at the University of Minnesota. He's the former great defensive back in the NFL for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He's the guy who, as head coach, built the great defense for the Tampa Buccaneers that the next head coach utilized to become NFL champions. He's the guy who went on to be a great coach for the Indianapolis Colts, winning them an NFL championship. And he's same guy who, despite all of this success and money, resigned from the NFL, because he felt it was his calling to work with youth: to teach them to be successful not only in sports but in the game of life. In other words, he's the perfect guy to talk to Vick.

The daddy knows you will not agree with him, but this talk will not be about getting Vick back into the NFL. It will not be about getting Vick a big fat money contract as a rejuvenated quarterback in the NFL. It will be about helping Vick to forgive himself and to move on as a better person, as a better citizen.

It will be a talk long overdue, but, to paraphrase a Sam Cooke tune, "a change is gonna come." Why? Because Dungy will help Vick to deal with something more difficult but, at the same time, much more rewarding: how to win off the field, how to gain a stronger sense of to win in life as a man and a citizen against those who are too angry, too smug, too superior, or too racist to forgive.

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