President Obama on Dec. 28 congratulated Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie for giving Pro Bowl quarterback Michael Vick a second chance following his prison stint for involvement in a dogfighting ring. But in response to the president’s comment, one conservative believes Vick instead should have been executed.
On the Fox News Channel’s “Great American Panel,” conservative host and pundit Tucker Carlson had some very pointed remarks about Vick and Obama.
“I’m a Christian. I’ve made mistakes myself, I believe fervently in second chances,” Carlson said. “But Michael Vick killed dogs and he did in a heartless and cruel way. I think, personally, he should’ve been executed for that. He wasn’t, but the idea that the President of the United States would be getting behind someone who murdered dogs—kind of beyond the pale.”
While Carlson’s extreme position has not been echoed by anyone else, there are nevertheless others who disagree with the president’s second chance belief. Several animal rights activists denounced the congratulatory phone call between the president and Lurie, saying that Obama is out of touch with animal lovers.
“If he couldn’t throw a football, he wouldn’t have had a second chance,” Bill Smith, founder of Main Line Animal Rescue in Philadelphia, told The Los Angeles Times. “This isn’t about giving anyone a second chance; it’s about who can make the Eagles organization more money.”
Smith, who organized a campaign to collect food for animal shelters every time Vick is sacked, said if the President was serious about second chances then he’d adopt a dog from a shelter.
The White House responded to the criticism by saying that the phone call was about a number of things and Michael Vick just happened to be one of the topics.
“The president did place a call to Mr. Lurie to discuss plans for the use of alternative energy at Lincoln Financial Field, during which they spoke about that and other issues,” White House deputy press secretary Bill Burton said in a statement. “He, of course, condemns the crimes that Michael Vick was convicted of, but, as he’s said previously, he does think that individuals who have paid for their crimes should have an opportunity to contribute to society again.”