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Philly is Generous

August 24, 2009


So the city of Philadelphia is known as the city of Brotherly Love. Well sorry to anybody from Philly reading this, but you’re not really seen in that light. To a sports fan whose never been to the city, it’s more like a place where you’re a failure if you don’t win the Championship. It’s also a place where you could have batteries chucked at you, and have racial slurs recklessly tossed about whether you’re the home team or the away team. It doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have some redeeming qualities, but that they are few and far between.

This story is one of them. The City of Philadelphia has a program whereby any company hiring a recently released prisoner is eligible for a bonus/reward/gift. That bonus is a whopping $10,000. Hell, if you’re a recently released prisoner in the Philly area and you like sports contact me, I’ll hire you. To be completely honest, I’m amazed that in this economy such frivolous (some would say) spending is occurring. Yes a legitimate job might keep a criminal off the streets, but is the city actually wealthy enough to throw dollar bills around like Pacman Jones.

As we all know, Michael Vick was just released from prison. Therefore he needed a job, and a company in Philadelphia was kind enough to hire him. That amazing, generous, empathetic company was the Philadelphia Eagles. So empathetic were they, they took a poor destitute down on his luck individual and gave him a contract for $1.6 million for a year with a company option for a second year at more money. They even did this without giving him a period to test himself out. Just flat out money. Doing this though, qualified them for the $10,000 payout.

Apparently though, it’s all sunshine and rainbows for the Eagles Organization. When the mayors office contacted to let them know of their newfound good fortune, they turned the offer down. I mean come on, celebrated war hero* Michael Vick was signing with the team to throw an inflated piece of pig bladder around. It’s not like they’re a multi-million dollar team worth about 1 Billion dollars. Yes that source info takes the computer math and turns 1024 million into 1 billion, but whatever. The Eagles and Jeffrey Lurie are not only empathetic enough to hire a destitute, disgraced prisoner, but they wouldn’t take any of the money that the city could use for things like road repair, or say half a teachers salary.

I for one am duly impressed by both groups in fact. I’m impressed by the cities lack of reluctance to follow through on their plan even for a Billionaire recipient who clearly doesn’t need it. I’m even impressed with the Eagles not stooping low enough to steal more taxpayer dollars. The cynical part of me tells me it was a shameless PR move. The diehard fan in me tells me that it was a legit maneuver. If we find out later that it was a blatant PR move, I will go to Philly and burn down the stadium myself. If not, this story has gained some respect from me for the team. The NFC East could burn to the ground as far as I’m concerned, although the Giants beating the Patriots was the second best day of my life(Screw the Patriots). Despite that the Eagles, while not gaining a fan have gained my respect. After all, Dan Snyder or Jerry Jones would have taken the money. Assholes!

*Not actually a war hero.

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