So Sick of Vick! Will Someone Please Give This a Rest!

I have to say that I have had it.  I’m sick of going to the grocery store and seeing 5-500 magazine covers featuring the latest news on Brad Pitt’s relationship with Angelina Jolie and how Jennifer Aniston is dealing with it.  I’m sick of hearing about Brittney Spears–she is a bad singer–a terrible role model–an apparently awful mother–and frankly I do not care.  I’m tired of reading stories about the saga of Paris Hilton and other celebrity wanna-be’s.  And I’m really tired of hearing about how offended everyone is with Michael Vick.  Now don’t freak out–I have an explanation for that comment, but first read this story about Texas Tech’s latest attempt to violate the Constitution:

LUBBOCK — Texas Tech has banned the sale of a T-shirt bearing the likeness of Michael Vick hanging the dog mascot of rival Texas A&M.

The red and black shirts, with text that says “VICK ‘EM” on the front — in an apparent reference to the Aggies’ slogan “Gig ’em” — was created by a Tech student who was trying to sell them before Saturday’s game in Lubbock.

 Michael Vick shirts

The back of the shirt shows a football player wearing the No. 7 Vick jersey holding a rope with an image of the mascot Reveille at the end of a noose. Vick, who faces up to five years in prison after pleading guilty to a federal dogfighting charge, is suspended indefinitely by the NFL.

Tech officials announced the fraternity that sold the shirts was suspended temporarily and will face judicial review for allegedly violating the solicitation section of the students’ code of conduct. The school said it wouldn’t allow the sale on campus of items that are “derogatory, inflammatory, insensitive, or in such bad taste.”

No more shirts are being produced, the school said in a release.

A&M officials, in a statement, thanked Tech administrators for “their response and action regarding this matter.”

The creator of the shirt, Geoffrey Candia, declined to comment in an e-mail to The Associated Press on Tuesday. He said he may make a statement after meeting with the dean of students.

He told The Battalion, A&M’s newspaper, for Tuesday’s editions that the university prohibited sale of the shirts on campus through his fraternity. He said he originally had wanted to give 50 percent of the proceeds to an animal defense league in Lubbock “because we knew there would be a controversy about the shirts, you know, animal rights, stuff like that.”

Candia told the newspaper about 300 had been sold. He had hoped 500 would be sold before Saturday’s game.

First of all, the shirt is definitely in bad taste, possibly humorous (of course I am a Longhorn and thus have little sympathy for the Aggies being taunted), but certainly in bad taste.  Similarly, the Rice Owl band performed a skit at the halftime show of the UT/Rice game a few weeks ago where they had a band member dressed up like Michael Vick being led around on a leash by another band member dressed like a dog.  Bad taste?  Maybe–but it was also kind of funny.

Here is why I’m howling about this.  I have seen NFL players charged with beating their wives (Warren Moon), I have seen MLB players accused of beating their girlfriends and wives (Julio Lugo), I’ve read numerous stories of NBA players fathering multiple children from multiple women and having to be dragged into Court to make child support payments (too many to list).  And I must say that I have never seen more outrage, stories written, public outcry and claims of being offended in any of those situations as I have seen regarding Michael Vick running an illegal dog fighting competition.  Where are our priorities?  Don’t get me wrong–I think what he was doing was wrong and cruel–but it involved dogs–not people.  Punish him for breaking the law and be done with it.  It just isn’t worth all of this hysteria.

And now–some kids comes up with a clever–but seriously shameful–T-Shirt design regarding a college football game and the University (a place where free speech is encouraged–just ask Columbia) attempts to shut his enterprise down.  Not because it is illegal or pornographic but because showing the A&M mascot on a noose being held by Michael Vick–well that is so offensive and of course, it brings back all of the horrible memories of his dog fighting issue.  I would completely understand and support Texas Tech publicly stating that they do not support the T-Shirt design and think it is wrong and shameful-but shutting it down and punishing the student–come on–that is ridiculous.

I know Aggies will read this post in horror because after all, when their mascot dies, they bury him outside the stadium with his body facing an archway that allows the dead dog to always see the scoreboard.  (I so wish I was kidding about this—but I’m not).  So I apologize Aggies.  I can see how offended you would be.  After all it was an Aggie that came up with a T-Shirt that shows Bevo’s horns sawed off and more recently another one that shows Bevo’s horns to be made out of handcuffs.  How rude!

<div class=caption align=left>Brad Honer - THE BATTALION<br>The University of Texas is suing Aggieland Outfitters to cease and desist its production and use of the saw 'em off logo.</br></div>

-Murphy

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2 Comments on “So Sick of Vick! Will Someone Please Give This a Rest!”

  1. Willie Says:

    I enjoyed reading this very much. It is well written and well said!

    I’d like to point out that it’s not a fair equivalent to make same the Vick Em Tshirt to a sawn off horns shirt. The sawn off horns shirt is a changing of a logo, and a longhorn logo is the skull of an already dead animal anyway. The Tech kids were making a tshirt that was (while meant in jest, obviously) endorsing killing our beloved Collie.

    That being said, I think it was stupid to even apologize for the shirts, and I find it abhorrent that government, in the form of the law or in the from of a public educational institution (and since it’s Tech I’m using that term lightly) to censor these kids. Even if it was offensive, to discourage entrepreneurship and to infringe on free speech is disturbing and another sign of liberal whining. Now we have to have the force of law and government keep our FEELINGS from being hurt?

    I’m an Aggie, I love Reveille and I saw the shirt, was riled up, and then figured we need to take our medicine. After all, t.u. calls it’s mascot BEVO because some Aggies branded the poor steer “13-0” and BEVO was the only word the tsips could come up with to cover it. Animal cruelty indeed.

  2. mklasing Says:

    Willie: glad to see an Aggie comment on this. And of course you are correct that comparing it to the sawed off horns is unfair, but of course–I’m a Longhorn, thus biased and was taking the satire a little too far. But hey, all in good fun. Thanks for the comment and good luck the next 2 weeks against OU and Missouri. Yeesh!

    -Murphy

    P.S.–gotta admit that “BEVO” is quick thinking. 🙂


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