The Michael Vick Puppy Dog Compromise

17 Dec

 There are definitely far more pressing issues going on in our nation today than whether or not Michael Vick should be allowed to get a puppy dog, and I can see that our elected officials have been very busy lately behaving like a pack of Michael Vick’s previous puppy dogs in a snarling, high stakes, Friday night smackdown, so I thought it would be patriotic and thoughtful and civic-minded of me to go ahead and handle this one on their behalf.  I know they want to get back to their mansions and start drinking, and hell they’ve earned it, right?

Not really, but since I’ve come up with a perfect compromise to address this problem, I’m going to go ahead and help them out anyway.

Now, I know what you’re thinking.  You’re thinking, well Tom, according to the last interview I watched, Michael Vick was prohibited by a federal judge from owning any more puppy dogs until his probation is up, and that’s true.  That part seems pretty straightforward.

Now it is certainly true that Michael Vick has been working directly with the Humane Society and that they say he’s probably ready for another puppy dog.  I don’t know how big of a raft of cash he floated down the river to them, but if it was enough to get them talking old-school crazy like that, then I’m already convinced.  There’s a certain amount of money you could give to the Humane Society where I wouldn’t care if you were eating the occasional puppy dog, since you’ve saved – and refrained from eating – so many others.  It’s a bottom line kind of thing.

However, I don’t think we need to give him any wiggle room on the probation, like he’s requested.  He apparently wants so badly to shower love and affection on a brand new puppy dog that he can’t wait six more months (or however long it is) for his probation to be over.  He wants a new puppy dog right now, so he can clearly demonstrate to everyone that he is responsible enough to not torture it into a dogicidal rage and then drop it into a pit with other dogicidal puppy dogs.   

The big show-off.

So anyway, the first part is easy.  No, you can’t have a puppy dog until your probation is up.  That’s part of paying your debt to society, which is what you keep talking about having done already, and although you did lose millions of dollars and your professional football career and your Big Shot Dog Fight Promoter Status, as part of your punishment, I can’t help but notice you seem to have been given two of those things back.  So no early puppy dog clemency for you, Millionaire Athlete – I know, it’s like you can’t catch a break.

But the thing is, if the judge said Vick can’t have a puppy dog until his probation is up, then that kind of by definition means that he can have one after that.  So I can’t see what’s stopping him, at that point.    

People tend to divide up into two camps here.  There’s the He’s Paid His Debt To Society crowd, who thinks the punishment for his crime was laid out nice and clearly, and when he’s finished with it, he’s got the same rights as the rest of us, including puppy dog ownership.  A pragmatic, fair-minded, football fan-heavy crowd, big into forgiveness – it’s kind of heartwarming.

Yes, and then there are the people who don’t give a rat’s ass about anything any judge said, they just love puppy dogs and hate people who hurt puppy dogs, and they think that while he’s hanging around the Humane Society, somebody ought to go ahead and put him down.  Maybe stick one of those cones around his head, watch him run around freaking out for a little while first.  Possibly some banjo music and a half dozen bear traps scattered about, to keep him shrieking.

I have to say that although I thoroughly understand both arguments, rationally, I think I’m with the first camp except I don’t know or care which football team Vick plays for, and I don’t know when the season starts or ends. 

But owning a puppy dog is not too regulated, and the Humane Society euthanizes around 300 septillion of them every single day, according to this whiskey bottle right here, and my thinking is, although Vick got his career back and his millions of dollars too, he probably doesn’t think of it as a funny escapade that he skated right through giggling. 

No, I think once he owns a puppy dog again, he’s going to be an extremely careful puppy dog owner.  And it’s not like forgetting to let the dog out so then it craps on the rug.  You don’t just forget to not torture your dog and then subsequently forget not to pit it against another tortured dog for fun and profit.  I’ll bet running a dog fight sounds far less glamorous to Mr. Vick, right about now, than it did five years ago. 

Still, I love puppy dogs, and it sure seems like Michael Vick doesn’t deserve one. 

So.  Here’s my plan, and the good news is, I already drove to DC and snuck into the House of Representatives in my Christmas tree suit, and attached it to the big tax cut bill right before they passed it last night, so Obama’s probably going to sign this into law any second now.  You want to hear it?

Cool, it goes like this:  Michael Vick can have a puppy dog.  Any kind of puppy dog he likes.

The dog however, will be fitted with a constantly live-streaming digital video camera on its collar, so that anyone at any time can log on to Vick’s puppy dog cam, and make sure that he’s being nice to the puppy dog. 

And I mean NICE.  Not just refraining from torturing the dog.  I want to see this guy petting the dog and hugging the dog and talking to the dog with a funny voice, and dropping crazy amounts of money on big, yummy knuckle bones.  I want that dog trotting around wearing Vick’s jersey, getting his butt kissed like the scary omnipotent kid from the old Twilight Zone movie.

And then the cool thing is, Michael Vick gets fitted with a shock collar, and jolted with increasing voltage every time he fails to be nice to his dog.  A really serious shock collar, like it’ll hurt him really bad, make him yelp girlishly and all that. 

Part of him being allowed to own a dog will be that he has to pay for the video camera, the web site, the shock collar, and a full-time Humane Society staff – don’t act like you don’t have the money, Vick –  to determine when he is anything but super duper nice to his puppy dog. 

Just imagine the hilarious all-proceeds-to-the-Humane-Society video that we can sell every six months or so, a montage of Michael Vick yelping and running around crying, screaming “Oh God stop, you monsters stop!  It was just a smack on the nose!  Dogs can’t be allowed to beg at the table, it isn’t right!”

No, Mr. Vick, we’ll be able to tell him.  Your puppy dog not only gets fed at the table, he gets his own damn chair.  And every day that we don’t have to hit you with the shock collar, you get a chair, too, you big, responsible, lucky duck, you.

So it’s a win for everybody, really.  Football fans get their football guy – they really seem to dig him.  Meanwhile dog fans get to watch Michael Vick hop around, half on fire, every time he has a Puppy Dog Lapse.  And the world at large gets a hilarious and edgy new reality series, because God knows we’re running low on them.  And I guess maybe a puppy dog gets a new home, but possibly booted across the room once in a while – you got to take the good with the bad, and anyway after that the dog gets public, cathartic revenge.

Then, in the unlikely event that Michael Vick ever gets caught running a dog fight again, we lock him in a Snoopy suit with his feet tied together, adjust the odds accordingly for the bookmakers, and boot him the hell in – go get ’em, tough guy.

I know it’s not perfect, but everybody gets something they wanted – it’s just the nature of compromise, and I know that’s something we’ve all got a huge appetite for right now.  You’re welcome, America.

You guys be sure and let me know if there’s anything else in the news you’d like me to clear up for you, cause I’m right here, and it’s my responsibility as a blogger.


Posted by on December 17, 2010 in Future Tom Grab Bag, News/Commentary


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3 responses to “The Michael Vick Puppy Dog Compromise

  1. LGwenn

    December 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    Ohhh see I have a different compromise in mind. He can have a dog…. but it has to be one of the ones at the shelter with the big NO symbol on the cage. You know? The one that they have to put the special suit on to feed?

    And he has to love it and hug it and squeeze it and call it George. In fact all of your compromise conditions can apply.

    Till it eats his silly ass.

    Lela, Who is firmly in the F*ck off Micheal Vick camp– even if it does mean agreeing with PETA

    • Tom Chalfant

      December 17, 2010 at 10:16 pm

      Another fair and reasonable approach – thank you Lela. I’m just really married to the Stream It Live clause, you know? So it’s great that we’re able to find common ground.

  2. Kimberly Kinrade

    December 21, 2010 at 4:55 am

    I feel compelled to point out once again that you are my primary, and sometimes my ONLY, news source. I had no idea HUGE puppy dog fates were being decided while I type away and live in my head.

    Thanks for the info. 😉 I’m for a live feed. And the Snoopy suit.


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