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Innocence Is No Longer An Option, I See

See, reading an article about the Humane Society urging Nike to drop Vick is what really pisses me off about this whole case. Last time I checked, nobody had come out with pictures of Vick throwing money at dogs. Nobody has anything--yet--that proves that Michael Vick is guilty of dogfighting. And I'm talking beyond a shadow of a doubt, if-the glove-doesn't-fit-you-must-acquit legal mumbo jumbo that the justice system is supposed to be founded on.

Yet here's the Humane Society, swinging a big bat at Nike's knees. If you're an animal lover, I understand the frustration with dogfighting in general and the desire to punish Vick. But to ask one of the world's biggest companies to drop one of their biggest pitchmen based on a case that hasn't even come to trial yet? That's just plain stupid. Maybe I'm just old fashioned, but I'm still clinging to that belief that someone has to be found guilty before we start slinging stones at him. I'm not the world's biggest Vick fan, as he's been far from the finished product on the field and has made himself a costly headache off of it. My aim is not to defend Vick so much as to ask when it became okay to start grandstanding about another human being's future without proof of what he's done wrong.

Nike has answered in essentially the same way I just did, except of course their concern is less for Michael Vick's innocence so much as their own wallets. If he's found guilty somewhere down the line, it's pretty likely Nike will drop a good chunk of their advertising with him because it will cost them money. Given Nike's past history of human rights abuses, I'm certainly not going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they just really care about Vick. It's just a damn shame to me that in this big rectangle of prosecutors, shoe companies, humane societies and Vick himself, not a single one has proved they're worth rooting for so far.

But I'll wait until all the evidence is in, thank you.