Dog-Killer Michael Vick Not Welcome in Oakland

Oakland, Calif. – In Defense of Animals calls on Bay Area residents to be a peaceful and powerful presence at Michael Vick’s upcoming Oakland appearance. Activists will hold signs and distribute flyers to fans. IDA’s message: we have not forgotten what Vick did, we oppose his weak punishment, and we are disgusted by his lack of remorse and multi-million dollar contract with the Eagles.

What: Peaceful Protest of Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles
When: Sunday, October 18, 2009 noon – 2:00 pm
Where: Oakland Coliseum, 7000 Coliseum Way Oakland, CA 94621

Before public exposure of his decades-long dog-killing days, Vick was an icon of success, hailed as a hero, idol, and role model. Vick tortured animals through forced dog-fighting, electrocution, hanging, and drowning, and those crimes should prevent a return to his previously exalted status. While Vick does have a right to seek employment after his release from prison, being awarded a position in the NFL, with the possibility of earning more than $7 million over the next two years, is more than he deserves.

While it may be profitable to employ Michael Vick, the NFL and the Eagles must recognize that by doing so, they send the message that torturing animals is not serious. Highly impressionable young people will see that the public admonishment of his crimes was followed by the subsequent awarding of a multi-million dollar job. It will be understandably interpreted as active acceptance of his character and actions.

Vick served less than two years for actively participating in and bankrolling an interstate dog-fighting ring. Now Vick is back living in luxury and playing professional football with a lucrative contract. IDA’s Grassroots Campaigns Director Hope Bohanec said ” that’s way too comfortable for a violent convicted felon, who supplied the property and dollars and confessed to actually killing six to eight dogs who refused to fight because of their gentle nature.”

IDA asks the NFL to communicate a powerful message of disapproval for animal cruelty by prohibiting the Eagles and any other team from employing convicted animal abusers. We also ask the NFL to include animal cruelty among its prohibited conduct for players. This is the time to put principles before profit and the NFL has an opportunity to do the right thing and play ball – without Michael Vick.

Contact: Hope Bohanec, (415) 448-0048 ex. 208, hope@idausa.org

In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization located in San Rafael, Calif. dedicated to protecting animals' rights, welfare, and habitat through education, outreach, and our hands-on rescue facilities in Mumbai, India, Cameroon, Africa, and rural Mississippi. _________________________________________________________________________________

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