Leppert Wants Control Over Keys to City

Categories: City Hall
thekeytodallas.jpg
Sure, they're only ceremonial -- not like they're getting someone into Dallas City Hall or Mac's or the downtown Neimans after hours. But Mayor Tom Leppert's taken note of his pro tem's gift to Michael Vick over the weekend and just sent this statement about how he wants this honor to be doled out in the future.
The action taken was not sanctioned by my office and was not an official ceremonial honor on behalf of the City of Dallas. Official Keys to the City are presented by the Mayor, or an elected official designated by the Mayor, and reserved, on a limited basis, for an elected official of international status. Clearly, this was not the case in this situation and done without my knowledge or approval.

Given these circumstances I have requested the City Manager propose guidelines to prevent this situation in the future.
Update at 3:46 p.m.: Because I've already spoken with Caraway, and because I see no reason to post three items about this, here's Caraway's Official Statement concerning his giving Michael Vick a key to the city:
Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway Statement:

Under current guidelines, Council members are given the opportunity to present a ceremonial key to the city to national celebrities, including sports figures. These ceremonial gifts are different from the official keys to the city presented by the Mayor. Since making some bad choices, Michael Vick has devoted time to speaking to children about staying in school, staying away from drugs, making positive choices about picking friends, and the importance of education. That was the focus of the event. I have also devoted a lot of my time to helping teenagers by hosting more than a dozen teen summits at City Hall - all with positive themes -- to make sure our youth get on a path to success and prosperity. For those reasons, Michael Vick deserves such an action from my office.

I care deeply about animals. I fully support our new initiative "Dallas Loves Animals" campaign. I have two dogs of my own and I am deeply sorry to offend anyone who loves animals.

I welcome a clarification of the guidelines regarding ceremonial keys to the city.

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54 comments
Tina
Tina

Just goes to show how damn corrupt this place is. Caraway you are a stupid, ignorant bastard!

Clancey
Clancey

In Louisiana elected officials understand part of their job is to keep voters entertained; there was the epic debate between Edwin Edwards, recently out of a federal pen, and David Duke, head of the KKK. Edwin suggested a contest to see which of them was better under the sheets.

In that context, let's make Dwayne Mayor. It should be hilarious. With Andrew and Archie as his drivers/bodyguards. He can rail about saggy pants, whup up on his wife (or vice versa, till the tapes come out we won't know for sure), etc.

City Hall is going to screw us, regardless. Shouldn't they at least make us laugh while they're doing it?

Thelisma Partridge
Thelisma Partridge

If my child cited Mick Vick or Dwaine Caraway as inspirational role models I would be Very Very Concerened...

Tad Banyon
Tad Banyon

Even if Vick had never abused a single animal in his life, he still wouldn't be Dallas Key To The City material.

DoubleOJoe
DoubleOJoe

I second this. Even disregarding the dog fighting, what exactly has Michael Vick done for Dallas to deserve a key to the city, no matter which member of the city government gives it to him? Played some football games here... for another team?

Anonymous
Anonymous

I agree. The black community already has more than enough examples of superstar athletes for their youth to aspire to. Why not glorify someone in another field?

Mary Ann Jenkins
Mary Ann Jenkins

So Betty, let me get this straight, showing the picture of the dog Vick had abused to Vick was crazy because "the dog was not a pet, he was a working dog." The "work" this dog did was to get thrown, repeatedly, into a pit, at Vick's direction, so fighting dogs could "practice" on him. And because that was his "job" the dog was being "exploited" by his new owners, the owners who feed him, love him and pay his vet bills? By your criteria, John Walsh is nothig but a raging opportunist.

Betty, I think you have missed the point of many of the posters here, that the only reason Michael Vick is "reformed" is that he got caught. Many people who abuse animals also abuse people; in fact, they usually start on animals. Animals, including "working dogs," are entitled to extra consideration from us because, as with children, they have little or no control over what is done to them. Our duty is to take care of the weak and helpless, either two or four-footed. My scorn for Michael Vick has nothing to do with his race, it has to do with his lack of character; and I feel the exact same for the Pittsburg quarterback, who is also an abuser, the only difference is that his victims are two-footed.

pencil
pencil

Kneegrow racism clouds wise judgement, which explains the 96% black vote for Øbama and the OJ jury letting a double murderer walk free.

Doug in DFW
Doug in DFW

Hunter being a self-promoting windbag & Vick being a convicted dog-killer are not mutually exclusive. However, after reflecting on Ms. Culbreath's comments I'm putting the race card back in the deck & saving it for when the Archie/Arthur police report is released. Once Big Ben is convicted, serves time & says he's sorry then Caraway can give him a key as well. By the time Mayor Caraway's benevolent reign ends Tony Romo will be the only NFL QB without a key to Dallas.If the 2011 St. Patrick's parade doesn't have Michael Vick as Grand Marshal then the racists have won as the children will not have any convicted felon positive role models left.

SwiftyRoo
SwiftyRoo

Ceremonial or not, a Key to the city should not be given out to the celebrity of the moment. There are many other celebrities and sports figures that have done substantially more than Vick. He hasn't proven anything but that he can follow agendas setup by his agent, publicist and parole officer. Disappointing Dallas, very disappointing.

Gerald Britt
Gerald Britt

Curious, re: Michael Vick. How long do you have to keep paying AFTER you've paid your 'debt to society'? Or have we retired that phrase and concept?

Not Guilty
Not Guilty

I wish the quick and easy forgiveness shown by the black community to Michael Vick would extend to the rest of us who weren't even born as recently as the Jim Crow-era.

When is our ancestors' debt paid? When can we analyze things and call for justice without being called racists?

And I don't think Vick paid his debt. His debt should have been a life sentence instead of the wristslap he got.

jfpo
jfpo

Just because he's "paid his debt" doesn't mean I have to like him or celebrate his court-mandated "redemption."

Bettyculbreath
Bettyculbreath

The couple that adopted Vick's dogs, did so to make news and money.They passed all the Pit bulls, in Dallas County and Texas to travel miles for those particular dogs.They haven't gotten the attention needed, so its on to invading an event uninvited ,so the husband can ambush Vick, film and post on You Tube.They are worse than Sara Palin.This couple did not adopt for Love of animals, but for the love of money.Showing a picture of the dog to Vick was crazy, the dog was not a pet,he was a working dog, I don't support dog fighting,but I don't support exploiting animals either. Vick went to jail for operating a dog fighting organization, not burglary or thief,there's not a dam thing in City Hall or any house in Dallas that he needs to steal.I wish you all loved Humans as much as you love Micheal Vick's dog, there are plenty dogs to love and adopt,they just don't belong to Vick. Those token keys are given by Council Members all the time.Much to do about nothing.Vicks ordeal is 5 years old,the raping QB has case pending,I forgot he's white and OB not the same thing.

Jack E. Jett
Jack E. Jett

I just want to note that I have known Richard and Mel for a while. To suggest that he did this for publicity is idiotic. He is NOT that kind of a dog. Not to mention that taking on a pit bull that has major social issues is almost a full time job. i can assure you that Richard AND his wife have devoted a lot of time and a ton of love to make sure the rest of Mel's life is a happy one. So Betty, take your race card and put it back in your deck. Your defense of a criminal who electrocuted and drown canines makes your race card look worn. Besides Mel is black and proud of it. I assume if the Hunter's had adopted a white dog, you would have a race problem with that too.

JWP Equity
JWP Equity

@Betty -- a Working dog? are you confusing the treatment of a guide dog or a hunting dog as they are not routinely drowned in five gallon buckets or hung from ropes at the end of their 'useful careers'.

Someone you used to profess to admire asked that we judge people by the content of their character. A lot of the folks you stick up for seem from Don Hill to Michael Vick, even if their crimes are not recent. By reflect, we are judging the content of your character and find it not only lacking but disappointing. You have done a lot of good by the school kids but you now sound like a cheap, generic apologist for anyone who just happens to have a similar skin shade to yours.

matilda of tuscany
matilda of tuscany

I do love humans as much as dogs. That is why I don't want any children to see that a torturous felon still serving probation can be held up as a hero. We need less athlete "heroes" across all of our "communities" and more scholars, humanitarians, and people who have truly risen from the depth, out of perseverance--not role handling. Barack Obama, Mandela, Desmond Tutu, Yes!--Michael Vick, are you kidding me? Hell NO!

jfpo
jfpo

So white people who don't like Michael Vick are now racists? In case you haven't noticed, not many people outside of Pittsburgh like the white QB, either (his common nickname is Rapesberger). I don't know how you think the Hunters are making money from their adoption, and you clearly don't know what they went through to get this dog. Your accusations of exploitation by adoption are simply ignorant.

ijacks
ijacks

THAT'S WHAT IS WRONG WITH SOCIETY NOW. THEY CARE ABOUT ANIMALS MORE THAN THEY CARE ABOUT HUMANS.PEOPLE ARE HOMELESS AND NOBODY INCLUDING THE RICH CARES TO DO ANYTHING. LET THE ANIMALS TAKE CARE OF THEMSELVES.

matilda of tuscany
matilda of tuscany

We care about what Michael Vick did to animals because it is the hallmark of sociopath behavior--animals today, homeless tomorrow. Leppert may be rich and selfish and corrupt, Caraway is pompous and ignorant and corrupt. Both need to go.

Jack E. Jett
Jack E. Jett

Animals can take care of themselves as long as we are NOT electroquting them or drowning them.........like Mike Dick Vick. I assume it turns him on to see canines suffer.What a sick bastard. Even sicker is our political leaders giving him the key to the city.

Society is capable of caring for both animals and children. It is not one or the other.

rubbercow
rubbercow

You know what is wrong with society now? PEOPLE WHO FEEL THE NEED TO SHOUT CONSTANTLY!

ijacks
ijacks

Nobody cares about what Leppert says;A MILLIONAIRE WHO WOULDN' HELP A HOMELESS PERSON OR BLACK PERSON BECAUSE HE THINKS HE IS TOO GOOD. I AM GLAD THAT HE IS NOT RUNNING FOR MAYOR. HE HASN'T DONE A DA__ THING FOR DALLAS. GOOD RIDDANCE. AND HE WON'T WIN RUNNING FOROTHER PUBLIC OFFICE EITHER.Lepord will never be the man Caraway is because he is rich and selfish.

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

Basically what Michael Vick is an example of is that after you are caught you better make an effort to do what your probation officer tells you to do and fulfill the community service obligation of your sentence. Come on, does anyone really think he had a "road to Damascus" moment in which he suddenly realized how wrong and cruel his actions were? Or do you believe that if he hadn't been caught, he would he still be torturing dogs?

Jimkarger
Jimkarger

Caraway should be forced, under public pressure, to resign -- now. His decision illustrated more than just a lack of judgment but also a lack of compassion to those animals abused by Vick who is worthless human being who should still be in prison if there was any justice.

Jack E. Jett
Jack E. Jett

Caraway is a total failure as a human being and a worthless member of society.

His response is as week as his leadership.

Vick is on probation. Someone was shot at one of his recent shindigs. He has mutilated helpless animals. I assume that sort of action is fine with Caraway as long as teens don't wear baggy pants.

Allstarfamilyconnections
Allstarfamilyconnections

will someone, sam, robert, let me know where this event was held and if it was a ticketed event.

cp
cp

There's that youtube video in case you're thinking that it's all a conspiracy and a bad PR slam to Caraway.....

Homesick
Homesick

Jacquielynn Floyd reported it happened at the Super Teen Saturday charity event at Club Cirque. If so, the event advertised $10 tickets.....

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

Upon further thought, the explanation is probably simple. My guess is that this was a party that you had to buy a ticket to attend, and the tickets weren't cheap. Dwayne Caraway didn't want to buy tickets (for him the Mrs., Archie and Andrew), so he turned his appearance into an "official" event by giving Michael Vick a key to the city, thus getting them all in for free.

sandra crenshaw
sandra crenshaw

I missed it where was the event where the key was given and was it a ticketed event.

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

One of the other articles mentioned the key was given at a party, I'm guessing that it was a ticketed event. Would love to (1) know if it was, and (2) if so, did Caraway pay for his tickets.

Ellum08
Ellum08

But it was for the CHILDREN! THINK OF THE CHILDREN!

Danadoglover
Danadoglover

Go to Dallascityhall.com and find the contact information for Dwaine Caraway's office and then inundate them with emails and phone calls with your protests of this matter. It only makes you feel good to rant to the Dallas Observer, but maybe our rants should go directly to the source, Dallas City Hall.

ProjectGirl
ProjectGirl

I emailed him yesterday and it bounced back. I called, got a sweet girl on the phone who took my number and said someone would call me back. 24 hours later: No return call. I'd like to say I am surprised.

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

This is just appallingly awful. If MIchael Vick gave away all he owned and went to work at no pay at no pay in Mother Theresa's mission, maybe, maybe, he would, at the end of his life deserve a church burial. No one who did the vile things he did to those poor animals, repeatedly and over extended periods of time, is redeemable.The only thing that may is sorry for is that he got caught. The only thing that would have made giving him the key to Dallas more horiffic is if Dwaye Carey had invited the Dallas couple who adopted one of Vick's "bait" dogs to the ceremony.

brett
brett

so convicted felons have many of their rights taken away post-conviction, but yet they're awarded keys to the 5th largest city in america?

someone's been caught with their (overly saggy) pants down.

Emily MC
Emily MC

Dwaine Caraway obviously needs to read the Dallas Observer, he would that Dallas ALREADY has an image problem when it comes to Animal Welfare.

TManns
TManns

he won't be there long enough to review "the guidelines." He's leaving , right?

Guest
Guest

I can guarantee that no active Dallas Cowboy would get the Key to the City of Philadelphia regardless of their love for kids (in a strictly platonic way).

matilda of tuscany
matilda of tuscany

That anybody aligns Dallas with an animal abuser of this magnitude is absolutely disgusting. Of course our own animal control department is also abusers, so guess we are just wanting animal abuse and strip clubs to be our siren call for tourists?

Montemalone
Montemalone

And so the saga of saggy pants begins...

Sam_Merten
Sam_Merten

Official Keys to the City are presented by the Mayor, or an elected official designated by the Mayor, and reserved, on a limited basis, for an elected official of international status.

So, um, Gene Simmons is an elected official of international status?

http://blogs.dallasobserver.co...

Unfairpark
Unfairpark

Simmons is the king of the KISS Army (or something). I think that counts

Halldecker
Halldecker

This is something the Mayor's Office has always controlled, if you wanted to get one you had to arrange it there.

I must have misunderstood, I thought Dwayne gave him the COMBINATION to the City, 28 left, 14 right, 9 left. And that we had a locksmith coming over to change it first thing this morning.

DoubleOJoe
DoubleOJoe

Did the city change the combination? Used to be 36 left, 24 right, 36 left.

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