Sometimes Cam Newton can be an open book. Even if it’s hard to read the letters.
The Panthers quarterback celebrated the Thanksgiving week by rehashing one of the worst days of his life, by posting his mugshots from his stolen laptop incident at the University of Florida.
It was a reasonably heartfelt message. If you can read it, I mean. Newton posts message in his own special font for some reason, but if you look hard enough, you might see something worthwhile in there.
“I contemplated posting this and even reluctant about it, but as I think about my life and the many things I’m thankful for, I want to be an open book so people can hear my testimony and learn from the flaws and mistakes I made,” he wrote, translated to English. “On this day — 11/21/2008 — I was arrested for a stolen laptop, and I’m sure you’re asking yourself: ‘Where is he going with this story?’ But the moral of the story is this: On this date, I thought my life and my career was over, and the fact that I had shamed my family with the media coverage surrounding this situation. I vowed to myself on this day (nine years ago) that I will be better from this situation.
“What you must learn from this story is this: If you live your life listening to what other people are saying what you should do and not your own, shame on you. I can honestly say to you today that no one gave me a chance to succeed down bad in my situation, and if I would have listened to those people that said I can’t, who knows where I would be today. So I’m extremely thankful for God’s mercy, grace and favor over my life. So if I can do it with my circumstances, surely you can do it and be whatever you want to be with hard work and persistence. — Love.”
Newton’s seems aware of the fact his act isn’t for everyone, even if sometimes he lacks the self-awareness that he has been an active participant in creating some of the negative perceptions.
After going through a series of missteps this year (making a sexist joke, losing yogurt money because of it, then freezing out the local media), he’s in a better mood at the moment. He just hosted his annual Thanksgiving dinner for local underprivileged families, which certainly helps. They’re also winning, and that’s part of it.
But whatever you think of him, looking back on his past problems seems to indicate a desire to learn and grow from them. That’s a decent idea, whether you’ve ever been a teenage petty thief, an MVP, or write in a readable typeface.