Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Fair Second Chance

Deputy White House press secretary Bill Burton confirmed today that President Obama called Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie to commend him "for giving a second chance to quarterback Michael Vick, who played for the team after serving time in prison for running a dog-fighting ring."

Obama is quoted as saying, "It's never a level playing field for prisoners when they get out of jail."

Level playing field? Is he serious? Vick had a lot of support getting him back on the field from the day he was released. Vick was courted by several clubs because he was a known commodity and he and his handlers did everything possible to secure another contract as soon as humanly possible. So he served his time and walked back into his million dollar world. It was not a big stretch to get back into the league. I wouldn't call that an un-level playing field.

Do you think for one minute Obama would have called if Vick or the Eagles had not done well this year? I don't. Not for a minute.

Get back to me when Obama calls someone who's running a halfway house or a jobs program for ex-offenders, someone who's working in and with the community on behalf of ex-cons who need a break to get even a minimum wage-paying job, someone who's being a true mentor to those who have never had a break, ever. I'll even give him extra points if he does it when his timing is in no way related to any local, state or national election.

Don't get me wrong. I think Obama definitely has the message right, but given how little Obama has done for those who truly have had no advantage or support, I remain unimpressed with his "reaching out" to yet another rich and powerful person. I am really tired of hearing about the breaks the multi-million dollar athletes get, the ones at the top of the heap, when it's the millions scrambling to make a change, to make a better life, to contribute to their families and society who could really use the assistance, encouragement and 'attaboy' from our President. Just sayin'

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