The League

Roman Oben
Retired Football Player

Roman Oben

Played 12 years as a tackle in the NFL

Not Michael Vick

CLICK TO REACT Facebook

First of all, my deepest condolences go out to the family of Mario Reyes. A 59-year-old man working the third shift in order to feed his family and trying to catch a bus home at 7:15 a.m. certainly didn't deserve to die in such a tragic manner.

Unfortunately, the casual conversations, blog posts and talk radio segments I've heard all share the same sentiment: Why did Michael Vick get 23 months for dogfighting while Donte Stallworth got 30 days in jail for killing someone?

Let's understand the facts, folks. Michael Vick received a 23-month sentence because he funded an illegal gambling operation. It had nothing to do with dogs, period.

Donte Stallworth, on the other hand, immediately called the police, volunteered to take a sobriety test, pled guilty, was "very remorseful and cooperative," according to the Miami-Dade County prosecutors office, has reached an undisclosed settlement with the Reyes family and is currently serving a 30-day sentence for his crime.

It's sad when people make comments based on the notion that life isn't fair when a 28-year old African American professional athlete signs a seven-year, $35 million contract, then drives his Bentley under the influence and kills a pedestrian.

The next question usually heard around the water cooler is: "Why do these guys make all that money and go and do something like that?"

But we have seen examples of government officials, CEO's, teachers and even clergy making immoral and corrupt decisions. Why is there such a premium on the way athletes (or celebrities as a whole) live their lives?

The bottom line is the Reyes family is recovering from a tragedy. Donte Stallworth made a horrible mistake and admitted he would regret the incident for the rest of his life. That's it.

Let's stop comparing this incident to the Michael Vick case, and please let's stop putting this situation in the same window of everything else that goes wrong in the "failed moral behavior of athletes" category.

-------------

Follow Roman Oben on his Twitter page

By Roman Oben  |  June 20, 2009; 11:38 AM ET  | Category:  Cleveland Browns , Crime , Roger Goodell Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Consistent Punishment | Next: But He's Fun to Watch

Comments

Please email us to report offensive comments.



Athletes of Donte Stallworth's caliber are placed on pedestals, in some cases idolized and looked up to by many especially our youth.
Yes he immediately called the police, volunteered to take a sobriety test, pled guilty, and was "very remorseful and cooperative". He paid off the dead mans family. How much is a mans life worth?

BUT HE KILLED A MAN.

Ban him for life.
WIll that send a message?
Don't you think a message must be sent to all the other athletes that think they can get away with everything just like they did in High school and college. It seems easier the higher you go in your sport.
Send a message.
Some will get it.
A lot won't.

Posted by: VBFan | June 20, 2009 5:16 PM

You say, "But we have seen examples of government officials, CEO's, teachers and even clergy making immoral and corrupt decisions. Why is there such a premium on the way athletes (or celebrities as a whole) live their lives?"

Yes. And in many of those cases privilege has resulted in lesser penalties. This is precisely the point here.

Posted by: paul37 | June 20, 2009 6:00 PM

He killed a 59 year old man, but hey pro football must go on! How dare he be suspended for any time. Mario's life is not worth taking away a couple years of a pro season

Right???

Posted by: kathymac1 | June 21, 2009 8:36 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company