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Oh, this topsy turvy world we live in. This story came out when The Dog Files was taking a Christmas break, but I thought it was important to let you guys know.
By the way, the Ed Block Foundation is an organization that fights child abuse. Talk about irony.
PETA’s response to the award:
Today the Philadelphia Eagles announced that convicted felon Michael Vick’s teammates have voted him the winner of the Ed Block Courage Award, whose recipient exemplifies “commitment to the principles of sportsmanship and courage.”
The Eagles fumbled badly in giving Vick this award, which is named after a man who advocated in behalf of abused children. Michael Vick should not be someone anyone points to as a model of sportsmanship, even though he has now exchanged dogs for touchdowns after serving time for extreme cruelty to numerous animals. The Eagles’ decision to give Vick this award is not appropriate and certainly does not mark a joyous moment in NFL history.
It seems like only yesterday when Vick emerged from the slammer after serving less than two years for “sportsman-like” conduct such as laughing as fighting dogs ripped apart his family’s “pets” and hanging and drowning dogs who lost fights.
If there were an award for cruelty, I’d nominate Vick. What do you thinkâ€”good idea or epic fail?
Toni Monkovic of The New York Times response:
Did Vick Deserve Courage Award?
Earlier this week, Eagles players voted unanimously to give Michael Vick the annual Ed Block Courage Award. Each N.F.L. team selects a player who best exemplifies â€œcommitment to the principles of sportsmanship and courage.â€ PETA said the Eagles â€œfumbled badly.â€
Vickâ€™s initial reaction to the award came across as somewhat self-pitying, and was not helpful: â€œIâ€™ve had to overcome a lot, probably more than one single individual can handle or can bear. You take a look at what Iâ€™ve been through, you ask certain people to walk in my shoes, they probably couldnâ€™t do it. Probably 95 percent of the people in this world â€” because nobody had to endure what Iâ€™ve been through, situations Iâ€™ve been put in, situations Iâ€™ve placed myself in.â€
Phil Sheridan of The Philadelphia Inquirer responded with a column in which he wrote: Itâ€™s hard to believe anyone thinks he deserves an award for courage or character.
Rich Hoffman of The Philadelphia Daily News added context to Vickâ€™s response: When you talk to Vick, it sometimes takes him a minute to get to the key point: situations Iâ€™ve placed myself in. That is what rankles for some, still, that minute it sometimes takes. But it is all part of a longer process.
Anyway, Vick said, â€œThe thing I told Roger [Goodell] was that, 4 or 5 years from now, when I come to him, Iâ€™ll be able to say everything I told you I was going to do, Iâ€™m still doing it. Thatâ€™s what I pride myself on. Thatâ€™s my focus and thatâ€™s my goal.â€
That might have seemed a more appropriate time for an award such as this one, not now. Then again, this is all about a bond within a locker room, a place that none of us can hope to understand from the outside.
And finally, a petition you can sign to let the Eagles know what you think: