The Michael Vick Project? or Conspiracy?- Arra Simmons

One of the my most memorable and proudest moments in history was the OJ Simpson verdict, Summer 1995 I was pregnant with Kris and watching the OJ trial cause Young and the Restless was interrupted. I remember hearing the verdict not guilty. I was in my bedroom my mom was out in the “Florida room” another term for den. I heard scream and yell out whaaaat!!! He got off. A black man got off. I was in my room crying she came back and we cried together. It was just like the day President Obama won the election. I hate to make such a comparison but when a black man gets out going to jail for life… It’s a happy day for African Americans all over the United States, believe it.

Last night I watched the Michael Vick Project and I just couldn’t believe my ears as I listened to Michael and his family describe their lives leading up to the “raid” on his mansion. My son was watching with me. I asked him during the commercials. Can you see what happened. All he could say is they just don’t want to succeed. Then I asked him to provide details. He said this “they knew Michael Vick liked football and he also helped other black people. They don’t want us helping one another when we make it and they don’t us doing anything they do without them knowing about it… that’s on any level“.

That’s the jist of it basically. However this is what I explained to him based on what Michael and his family said about their lives prior to making it. And this is why I was so pissed off. Time line “I grew up in the projects, all I saw everyday was dog fighting, that’s all I knew” Michael Vick. Football and dog-fighting, those were his passions because that’s what he saw around him. Why didn’t the police go to the projects and inform those people hosting dog-fighting events during those times that what they were doing was illegal. I will tell you why because it was the projects filled with Afrikans who didn’t know any better had nothing else better to do so they chose dog fighting as away to entertain themselves and make money. Know different from what the men in the villages of Africa did, they may not have been fighting dogs in Africa but they sure as hell was trying to depend on white folk as the source of getting by.

Lets fast forward, so Michael Vick gets the NFL slavery contract and “Life was Good it was like a dream, there wasn’t anything we couldn’t do or buy”… That’s was his false sense of freedom and control of his own life. “I remember it was like shop til you drop, Nieman Marcus stayed open late for us” Vick’s wife…. Imma pause right there. Who you think profited from that? Imma tell you who didn’t, it, for sure as hell, wasn’t the store clerk working off her commission, either going to school or a college graduate struggling to feed her family, who probably needed to be home with a child a not working over a shift that she isn’t gonna get over time for, why, because she is only schedule to work 30 hours a week. “And a white man get paid off of all of that..” Kanye West.

But Vick, they said wasn’t a person who said no. Meaning he went back to his neighborhoods and was helping people in need. “Oh no he didn’t…” Whitey. See once we make it we ain’t suppose to go give back to those we leave behind in the projects whitey gave Vick a meal ticket he was suppose to forget where his came from. But check this white man, Vick told you,  “That’s all I knew“.  We are a people, who, by nature we go back and share, we want people to know that there is something better out there and just like I got you can get it to. It’s called motivation, sharing and teaching… We ain’t spose to know nothing about that in the hood.Not only was life good, money, cars, clothes they were just making all types of dreams come true. Vick wanted to “get big in the dog fighting game”. Hey I’m not certain whether Vick knew if that part was illegal but I am certain that somebody that knew about it knew and all they had to do was say “look Mike, this dog fighting  is something that can ruin you, so if it’s really want you want to do let’s take out of your hands“. That’s exactly what the man does to cover their names and images use a person who won’t get as much attention from the media or time in jail, if caught, and it never links back to person running the show.

However this is what happened to Vick, knowing that his dog fighting events were becoming popular and black people were profiting from them, they had to find a way to infiltrate “legally“. Trust, the powers that be were watching everybody to see who they could “catch slipping” and that person had to be someone who wasn’t aware of his constitutional rights, because they’ll give up information easily. Once threaten with you know you can go to jail for a long time, however we can make a deal, tell us what we want to know and you’ll get a slap on the rest this time (meaning you’ll get the original sentence for the minor crime committed).

So Vick’s cousin was stopped by the Nazi’s oops police he had 3 ounces, yup I think he said OUNCES of marijuana, in his possession. Not cocaine, XTC, nothing that would get him any real time, marijuana yall . However the police persuaded him to give him all of the information on his cousin MICHAEL VICK, the real target. Homeboy, told the address to the house, where they could find what they need to link him to the dog fights, the address to the kennell dude gave up all the information for three ounces of marijuana.  Michael Vick’s house was raided. Imma just stop right there.

Cause their next move really pissed me off. Once Michael Vick’s house was raided and he was to embarrassed to answer his phone, couldn’t talk to his mother, his brother or his coach. Then his “life stopped”. Where were his supporters, his fans, you know,those people who had their hands out when his life changed? Where were all of those people during his trial and hard times?  Imma tell who was there, the damn “Organizations” such as PETA, waiting to speak out against him and make him look like scum. Why because they knew we, as a people (African American), were to damn distracted to try to come together and support, our brother.. Man of GOD. Souds like what the did to Jesus too. I’m just saying, Judas wasn’t Jesus cousin but I bet for damn sure if he was living in today’s society he would have been the one giving up the goods because he got caught with a bag of weed.

This question was asked in my Criminal Justice class in reagrds to Miranda rights… You the stuff the police say suspects when they’re making an arrest.

Why is the Miranda ruling important for police to understand? Explain your answer.

Here are some of the responses from my class mates:

Response 1:(female) The importance of Miranda rights and having them read to an individual under arrested is to protect them from self-incrimination ( the fifth amendment protects against this) and protects the police from allegations of coercion.

Response 2: (female) The Miranda ruling is important for police to understand because it is based on the Fifth Amendment, which states that “no one shall be compelled to be a witness against him-or herself in a criminal case.” If the police want their evidence and statements to “hold up” in court the person has to be read their rights when going into custody and or interrogation. Self incriminating when not read those rights, or even understanding those rights would create a major problem, not only for those officers, but also for the prosecutors taking the offender to trial. The last thing both parties would want is a mistrial. This way, the police officers are covering all of their bases so to speak.

Response 3:(Male) The Miranda ruling is important for the police to understand because it establishes that a defendant in a criminal case has to be made aware of their rights or any evidence or statements obtained may be suppressible by the court. The theory behind this is that it is not only important that a person have rights, but also that they are aware of them and can make a full and knowing waiver if they choose to talk to the police. Which I think it is a great law.  My response to response 3: I agree it’s a great law for those who understand it, many people are arrested and read the Miranda Rights and continue to allow the police to interrogate them. They speak to police and give up information that can be held against them in a court of law that if an attorney is present might not be as “substantial” in a court of law. It is a good law for those who understand that they can refuse to speak to the police until there is a some sort of representation present. For those who are ignorant to the true meaning of Miranda rights in many cases become entrapped because of their “fear’ of the police.

Response 4: The Miranda ruling is important for police to understand because it’s the officer’s protection. Once an arrest is made Miranda Rights should be quoted in a way that the suspect should understand as well. Miranda rights also protects the victim from police interrogation. Many suspects become their own victims because they were entrapped into saying “I understand” once the officer has read them their rights. Do they really understand that anything they say from that point on can be held against them, do they really understand they have the right to shut up until an attorney is present? Police must understand the Miranda ruling because he is responsible for ensuring the suspect understands once they have been read. Also the officer should be held accountable if those rights are misinterpreted by the suspect. That suspect may have pressured into saying “I understand“. Cristina Arra Simmons


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