I may be unduly influenced by my love of pets, but the NAACP is out of line here:
The president of the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP criticized the prosecution of Vick at a news conference Monday morning. Dr. R.L. White, Jr., accused the government of "piling on."
"There's a penalty in football for piling on," White told reporters. "After a player has been tackled and somebody piles on, they're penalized for unnecessary roughness. Today, the NAACP blows the whistle and warns the powers that be that you are piling on."
But there's more:
NAACP leaders urged public restraint Monday in judging Michael Vick before he has his day in court.
R.L. White, president of the Atlanta chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, said the Atlanta Falcons quarterback has been vilified by animal rights groups, talk radio and the news media and prematurely punished by his team and corporate sponsors.
"If Mr. Vick is guilty, he should pay for his crime, but to treat him as he is being treated now is also a crime," White said at a news conference.
No, it is not.
"Be restrained in your premature judgment until the legal process is completed."
Premature judgments like saying that the government is "piling on" and that the powers that be are being "warned"?
...White plans to contact Vick to see what assistance the Atlanta NAACP chapter can offer.
Vick's a millionaire many times over. The NAACP would be better off helping those with far fewer advantages in life than Vick.
White predicted that public opinion may worsen in the wake of Taylor's plea deal.
Until then, he said he would keep an open mind and encouraged others to do the same.
Georgia NAACP President Edward Dubose thanked Vick for his community service and the money and excitement he has brought to Georgia as a Falcon. Dubose said Vick is being prosecuted in the court of public opinion before he has had a chance to defend himself.
"We're not condoning bad behavior, but Michael Vick is innocent until proven guilty," Dubose said.
So that's it, huh? As long as he puts in community service hours and has brought "excitement" to Georgia as a Falcon, he gets a pass?
Atlanta chapter member Bernadette Allen attended the news conference and also a rally Sunday to support Vick.
Attend a rally to support Vick? Why? Doesn't sound like Ms. Allen is impartial. Does the "keep an open mind" apply to those charging that the government is "piling on" and those attending rallies in support of Michael Vick?
"The man is entitled to due process under the law, as is any citizen," Allen said.
Thanks for the civics lesson.