Endorsement or career cover-up?

By Camilo Echeverri Bernal
[email protected]

Michael Vick. Eagles quarterback and dog-killer. Ring a bell? With the diligent aid of his friends (Purnell Peace, Quanis Phillips and Tony Taylor ), he forcibly drowned, maimed, shot, and electrocuted these creatures (and perhaps more) all over the course of five years (2002-2007).

Dog fighting is the least of their crimes. Vick watched these animals as they tore each other up and bled. Often times, the dogs were purposefully deprived of food and sleep to make them more vicious and pugnacious. They were pushed to the very edge of their physical limits. Vick paid for these activities in South Carolina and Philadelphia out of his own pocket.
His petty excuse for a sob story only further exemplified how contrite he was, how wrong he was, and how he was unable to stop once started. His supporters seem to believe it. Though it may just be his skill they see worth forgiving and forgetting his crimes. Vick publicly apologized for his actions and said he was a changed man, shortly after his release from prison in 2009 and prior to his admittance back in the NFL.This seemed more like a performance.
Vick’s two year endorsement with Unequal Technologies took place last week, on Jan. 25. The company produces protective pads worn in football games and athletic wear in general. Rob Vito, President of Unequal Technologies seems to think Vick deserves a second chance. Vito is a dog-owner himself. In a recent interview, Vick said that being endorsed and wearing Unequal Technologies gear made him feel invincible. I wonder if he felt invincible when he was slamming dogs against the walls and concrete floors, or watching the light leave their defenseless eyes.
The Eagles went to Unequal to get some gear for Vick, as they thought he needed it so that he would not get hurt during the games since he apparently tends to get extra rough…

According to Unequal Technologies, Vick is the first paid endorsement as far as athletes are concerned. Why the peculiar choice?

Allegedly, Vick paid his debt to society through community service and manual labour. The Eagles quarterback now has a semi-blank slate in the eyes of the American public. Vick has used this to even advocate against underground dog fighting.

Unequal Technologies has refused to release any further details concerning the amount of money they will give Vick. They plan on doing so during their press release before or after the Super Bowl. I bet PETA has a piece of their mind to give to these people.