Full disclosure: OK, so I have a couple of dogs. Which means I like dogs - but I'm no peta-animals-are-fuzzy-people-type. I like a good hamburger as much as anyone (maybe more!).
That being said, this Mike Vick thing is one of the most ridiculously heinous displays of behavior I have seen - probably in my lifetime.
The guy's a monster.
He should throw himself on the mercy of the court, serve real prison time (1yr - 18mo.), pay the max fine(s), and never play professional football again. His cohorts should also serve time and pay fines, but it looks like that's not really going to happen.
There is so much evil surrounding this scenario...
I mean, geez! He (and his buddies) took dogs, an animal bred by humans over the course of hundreds and hundreds of years to be completely reliant and trusting on people to provide food, shelter, companionship and protection.
He betrayed, violated, and twisted those dogs' hard-wired compulsion to Serve and Obey into attacking one another into submission (or death). But that wasn't enough for these guys.
They took these beaten dogs - and they willing came to their Masters - and killed them viciously.
Imagine the dog's basic thoughts: "I'm beaten. But there is Master. He will help me. I'll go to him. I'm sorry, Master. Forgive me. I love my Master. He gives me food. Is there food?"
Instead of a pat on the head or a scratch behind the ears, his Master picks him up and strangles him; or hangs him; or beats him against the ground; or electrocutes him. If the dog's lucky, it's just shot.
What are those poor dogs' last thoughts? "I'm sorry! Forgive me! Save me! Master save me! sav..."
And this went on again and again and again. Coldly passionate. Systematically entropic. Pathetically violent.
And Vick was right in the middle of it.
I think what I find most egregiously offensive is that these men took innocent beasts, trained them to their most aggressive natures, and then executed the animals in particularly cruel ways - after the animals did as they were trained. It was organized torture for the pure purpose of entertainment.
There are lots of really bad things in the world, but only a few that are as disgusting as taking an innocent, domesticated animal without free will, corrupting, torturing, then slowly killing it.
Yeah, I have dogs, so I may take this more personally than many. However, my guess is that a lot of people without dogs feel the same way.
The public would be best served by expelling Vick from polite society - forever.