We all watched the character assassination of Cam Netwonin his post Super Bowl 50 loss, as he was berated by the press for not being a “good sport.” The outpouring of criticism was a reminder that somehow in all the fanfare, people forget these heroes are still humans.
Underlying those critical remarks was the sting of racism, as revered sports commentators and NFL peers lambasted the athlete for his exit; linebacker Bill Romanowskievenwent as far as tweeting that Newtown was a “boy.”
It was apparent the mantle of being the sixth Black quarterback to start in the NFL’s history comes marked with honor and inherent criticism that goes beyond his on-field performance — it’s skin deep.
That’s why his recent comments to GQare surprising as well as confusing.
He said in an interview with Zach Baron that he believes those who are critical of him aren’t driven by racism, adding, “We’re beyond that, as a nation.
“It’s not racism. Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion. I don’t look at it like that. I look at it like some people have certain beliefs, and I have my own belief, and we can agree to disagree on certain things. But this is what makes sports so amazing, that we can start a discussion around a table, in the newspaper, in the magazines, that will get people’s attention. And that’s what sports does.”
Criticism, is no new feature in the world of sports commentary, but the particular language aimed at Black athletes is distinguishable. Seattle Seahawk Richard Sherman was labeled a “thug” at one point, and Marshawn Lynch was berated for being noncompliant during press conferences.
But Peyton Manning, in all his White privilege, was allowed to leave Super Bowl 44 early before he and the Indiana Colts lost to the New Orleans Saints.
Given this background, Newton’s recent statement America being beyond racism is problematic. It reeks of lethargy in the age of political correctness over raw honesty. Maybe he’s tired of having the conversation after having it so many times. Maybe he would like his athleticism to proceed his skin color.
But simply ignoring race in a time where Donald Trump is riding hate as his campaign carpet and Black Lives Matter movement still has to explain why Black lives matter is one of the least heroic things the football player has done.
1. In 2015, Miley Cyrus revealed that she identifies as sexually fluid, telling Paper magazine, “I am literally open to every single thing that is consenting and doesn’t involve an animal and everyone is of age.”
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2. Ricky Martin shocked the world when he came out as gay in 2010. The father of two once revealed, “I know that I like both men and women, I’m against sexual labels.”
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3. After photos surfaced of her making out with Michelle Rodriguez, Cara Delevingne came clean about her bisexuality, saying, “It took me a long time to accept the idea, until I first fell in love with a girl at 20 and recognized that I had to accept it.”
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4. Frank Ocean captivated the world with his songs about love and women. When he opened up about his experience falling in love with a guy, he garnered the attention of many more.
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5. Lady Gaga has been open about her sexuality since the beginning of her career. After naysayers claimed it was all for marketing, she said, “This is who I am and who I have always been.”
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6. After coming under fire for using the F bomb multiple times on social media, Azealia Banks defended herself, saying “I can’t be homophobic. I’m bisexual.”
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7. Amber Rose has never been shy about her sexuality. She even openly admitted to being in a relationship with a girl, way before her Kanye days.
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8. David Bowie was one of the most notable artists of all time, whose sexuality and gender bent all of the traditional rules.
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9. Mel B once revealed that she was in a four-year relationship with a woman before.
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10. In 2013, Zoe Saldana said that she “might end up with a woman raising my children. I’ve been attracted to the male species, but if one day I wake up and want to be with a woman, I will do that because it is my life, therefore it is my decision.”
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11. Megan Fox told Esquire Magazine once, “I have no question in my mind about being bisexual.”
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12. Angelina Jolie has always been open about her bisexuality. She once told OK Magazine, “I have loved women in the past and slept with them.”
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Continue reading It’s Time To Trade In Cam Newton: Quarterback Says America Is Beyond Racism
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