Monday, December 10, 2007

Vick get 23 months, maybe

The saga is finally over: Michael Vick was sentenced to 23 months in prison on Monday. Most experts were looking at a 12-18 month sentence, but it looks as though the judge felt Vick's crimes needed more punishment. So, this means that the former Falcon will be gone for two years, right? Not so fast.

First off all, the sentence could be reduced by three months with good behavior. Which is fine by me. Hey, 20 months will probably send the same message, and prisoners should get a break if they're not running around in gangs and so forth.

But will Vick even get to 20 months? Maybe he needed to hire Paris Hilton or Nicole Richie as his lawyer, because they know how to get out of a sentence. The sobering reality is that celebrities rarely seem to serve a full sentence; they find some way to get out early.

So who's to say the same won't happen for Vick? I've already heard people saying, "It's not like he's going to serve the full sentence". That's right, we actually expect the famous not to be punished. This reflects rather poorly on our justice system, not to mention the message it sends to other young, rich celebrities.

But for now, we will wait. Maybe Vick will serve his sentence and be a changed man. But if history is any example, he'll be out on the streets within a year, at about which time everyone will have stopped caring (if they already haven't). For me, and for sports in general, we'll finally get to see if our justice system applies to men like Vick. My opinion: no, it doesn't.


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