"His little group has made it clear they fight dogs. People who defend that are slugs. This separates the smart people from the dumb."
Newman and his wife Krissie, who raise funds for animal welfare through The Ryan Newman Foundation and serve as volunteer board members for The Humane Society of Catawba County, hope that the Michael Vick case will bring more attention to dog fighting.
They'll call some attention to it themselves by sporting the t-shirts they had made last week that say: "7 to life" on the front and "Neuter Vick" on the back, which Krissie says Ryan will wear through the end of the season.
Like the Newmans, Greg Biffle and his fiancée Nicole Lunders, founders of The Greg Biffle Foundation, are also outspoken animal rights advocates. Biffle recently spoke out saying that Vick deserves the stiffest punishment available--if found guilty.
Lunders had this to add:
"The accusations against Michael Vick are sickening ...I have seen the after pictures and stories of animal fighting ring busts and it is disgusting and heartbreaking. The torture that the animals endure is horrible. The unfortunate thing is that this has been going on for quite awhile and most dog fighting rings are underground. This case has gotten everyone's attention and I hope that whether he is found guilty or not that people stand up and demand harsher penalties for this crime. I also hope that it will help put an end to this barbaric torture of animals."
As a non-Vick supporter, my hope is for a "smart" jury and swift sentence from a judge like this one, who assigns a punishment that befits the crime.