Cam Newton: Criticism of me isn’t about racism

AP

As Cam Newton has climbed up the ranks of NFL quarterbacks, there have been rising amounts of praise and criticism for the way he plays the game and conducts himself on and off the field.

Unlike some of the other quarterbacks at the top of that list, Newton is African-American and that has led to some questions about whether race is a factor in some of the criticism he has received. It was something bandied about heading into the Super Bowl with Newton sharing his opinion that “an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”

That doesn’t mean Newton believes that his critics are fueled by racism, however. In an interview with Zach Baron for GQ, Newton said he didn’t agree with former teammate Josh Norman and backup Derek Anderson when they asserted race was the motivating factor.

“It’s not racism. Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion,” Newton said. “I’ll let you be the judge. 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. … I don’t want this to be about race, because it’s not. It’s not. Like, we’re beyond that. As a nation. … Yeah. I mean, you bring it to people’s attention. But after that, that’s it.”

It’s impossible to know what’s in everyone’s hearts and minds, obviously, and our nation being beyond race feels like a stretch, but star quarterbacks of every stripe hear criticism about a wide variety of things. They may not all be the subject of letters to the editor of the Charlotte Observer from people who feel it is their business to comment on their family dynamics, but there’s a common thread of star quarterbacks being in the crosshairs that extends beyond the color of their skin.

74 responses to “Cam Newton: Criticism of me isn’t about racism

  1. In other words, he thinks it’s about race. It’s about your lousy attitude.

    What a loser.

  2. Its not about race.

    Its about a guy who pretends he’s super man and then jumps away from his own fumble in the biggest game of his life.

    One of the single most cowardly acts I’ve ever seen on a football field.

  3. People need to ease up on cam. I know his post game interview was bad after the super bowl but he did just loose the biggest game of his life and was being forced to hear Aqib talib mouth off on how they knew cam couldn’t beat them with his arm. I don’t know many people that would just sit there and act happy when someone is 10 feet away basically saying your not good at your job. Cam was extremely nice to Peyton and even said he is happy for him after the game and no one talks about that.

  4. You are absolutely right Cam my friend. But sadly when the media wants to push their racism agenda not even your opinion matters, and cities burn.

  5. Trying to wade through Newt’s muddy thought process and mangled syntax makes slavery seem like a holiday cruise on a luxury liner, but as near as I can decipher he’s saying it’s not for me to play the race card it’s for the rest of us to do it for him.

  6. Cam’s defining moment was when he ran away from his own fumble like it was an angry hornet’s nest. That is why people are down on you Cam.

  7. It’s his method that people don’t like. In reality, if you have a qb the size of a FB that runs like a feature back…..use it! Cam is what every mobile qb wants to become. The fact that he can go up the middle, break tackles, and evade like he does is amazing for a qb. If you don’t like it, stop him.

  8. Being obnoxious, preening and pouting comes in all colors..Newton is just better at it.

  9. patsxsaintsfan says:
    Aug 15, 2016 12:40 PM
    People need to ease up on cam. I know his post game interview was bad after the super bowl but he did just loose the biggest game of his life and was being forced to hear Aqib talib mouth off on how they knew cam couldn’t beat them with his arm. I don’t know many people that would just sit there and act happy when someone is 10 feet away basically saying your not good at your job. Cam was extremely nice to Peyton and even said he is happy for him after the game and no one talks about that.

    I’ll reserve judgement until we see if he’s now a “Grown Man” (as much as I despise that phrase) and deletes the chorus line portion of his game and just plays football. I can understand that given all the dabbing, he felt a little silly and was unprepared to deal with defeat. He’s a kid folks, with a lot of growing up to do before he’s an actual grown man.

  10. Maybe it is because he is a front runner.

    Dances and acts a fool when they are winning and says if you want him to not do that then stop him.

    Miller and Ware pantsed him in a big way and he acted like a spoiled punk.

    Sometimes in the big leagues you get more respect by how you act when things are not going your way than you do when everything is coming up roses.

  11. Our country will never be ‘beyond’ race as long as we have a liberal media bringing race into every story. They are doing their best to make sure Dr. King’s dream never becomes a reality.

  12. I’m white and I have criticized some of his behavior but I’m criticizing his behavior, not him. I don’t care if he’s African-American, Asian, Canadian, German or whatever.

    I’ve also leveled plenty of criticism against Mr. Butt-fumble. I don’t think I’ve ever heard him claim people are mean to him because he’s Mexican.

    I’ve also said a bunch of things about Sam Bradford, as have others. However, I’ve never heard him claim people are mean to him because he’s part Native-American.

    People say bad things about Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Ryan Tanneyhill, Joe Flacco, etc. The list goes on and on. When you are in a position that is highly visible, there will be criticism. That’s just a fact of life.

    Cam loves it when he’s winning and everyone is kissing up to him but when he gets criticized it’s because everyone is mean. Same with Kaeperstink. If it’s that bad just retire and go be a couch potato. Otherwise, man up.

  13. “an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”

    …certainly not Doug Williams or Russell Wilson…after all, they won their Super Bowls.

  14. “It’s impossible to know what’s in everyone’s hearts and minds”
    ====================================

    Which is precisely why it’s intellectually lazy to play the race card with not one shred of evidence. Yet everyone from Josh Norman, to Stephen A Smith, to Tony Dungy, to Warren Moon, to the democrat party and every liberal does it. It’s like scratching an itch, it’s done with an instant reflex without even thinking.

  15. realnflfacts says:
    Aug 15, 2016 12:47 PM

    It’s his method that people don’t like. In reality, if you have a qb the size of a FB that runs like a feature back…..use it! Cam is what every mobile qb wants to become. The fact that he can go up the middle, break tackles, and evade like he does is amazing for a qb. If you don’t like it, stop him.
    —————————————-
    Denver did stop him!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. He’s right. It’s more of a cultural disconnect than anything. Newton identifies with the hip hop portion of the entertainment world, and for whatever reason, whether it’s hip hop or Hollywood, most people backlash against NFL players identifying in that way. It’s the same kind of criticism Rodgers get for being “Hollywood” with his commercials or Manning got for having too many corporate sponsors, or Russell Wilson making commercials for and hocking anything that will pay him. Newton’s just in the hip hop lane. Jameis Winston will probably be another one who will follow that script, even though he’s not as demonstrative on the field toward opponents to make him as polarizing as Newton. Teddy Bridgewater does none of this on or off the field, and thus if he has more success alongside both of those guys, watch him start being told to us that he “does it the right way” when they’re all actually doing it the right way, which is any way that they feel comfortable in their own skin. My advice to everyone, stop taking sports so seriously and let these guys be who they all are.

  17. Racism still exists but the majority of folks judge you by your character in my experience.

    I am a black male.

    Folks don’t like Cam because he’s immature and pouts often.

    Didn’t hear these complaints about….

    Russell Wilson
    Randall Cunningham
    Steve Mcnair
    Doug Williams
    Or even Tyrod Taylor for Pete’s sake.

  18. Our country will never be ‘beyond’ race as long as we have a liberal media bringing race into every story. They are doing their best to make sure Dr. King’s dream never becomes a reality.
    __________________________________________This is funny. Becasue there is so much love and harmony from a right wing nut named Donald J, Trump? Good lord this country has some lunatics in it.

  19. I recall during the 2015 season, Newton supporters claimed Newton was not being a diva or immature, he was just “having fun” and “it’s harmless.” Then the Superbowl happened.

    I’m not a Cam fan or detractor, but it would be better for everyone involved if he acted more mature from here onward. When a star player loses, he does not have to be cheerful, but he still needs to be open and take his lumps. Acting petulant makes you a jerk. Overall, Cam is not setting the best example for young athletes.

  20. It is about race for all the clowns in North Carolina.
    Still remember stiff white guy in Charlotte sitting next to me at Cam’s first game. You know the dockers and polo shirt? Cam had thrown for 450 in his first game and after a deflected pass was intercepted he leaned over to me and said ” it was just a matter of time” That my friends is Charlotte and that my friends are bigots also know as Trump supporters!

    In Cam I trust in spite of his color!!!!

  21. A narcissistic jerk is a narcissistic jerk. It’s all about Cam all the time in his world and it just so happens that his talent is such that he takes his team along for the ride.

    I see MeMe Watt as someone of Cam’s ilk with a high level of talent but first and foremost is looking for a way to stand out for even more attention.

    So, for me, no this has nothing to do with race. I prefer classy players that just keep their mouths shut and go about their job and play team first ball.

    Grow up Cam and just play the damn game.

  22. I don’t have any hate for Cam,other than being disappointed by how he handles losing, but I’ll tell you why people get so upset by Cam and not others. Cam’s smile.

    We’ve all got that friend with a contagious laugh or a particular smirk that makes you laugh normally, but if it’s used to taunt you, amps your anger up like it usually does laughs. Cam has that million dollar smile. So when it’s used after he destroyed your team you get even more angry. That’s it for me. I’m sure there are some that hate Cam because he’s black, but those numbers are dwindling every day as that generation gets older.

  23. It is about race… He is the future of NFL QB’s… Cam Newton is what they want Andrew Luck… Just hope he doesn’t slip up cause they looking for anything to stunt te growth of Cam the same way they did with Vick… Could you imagine the play of Qb’s in todays NFL if we had a fully develop Mike Vick… Could you imagine Cam Newton if he had witnessed a fully develop Vick… I know scary…

  24. Talent or toolbag both come in every color, players are lionized or lambasted according to how they exhibit either one. In Cam’s case he exhibits plenty of both, his color is no more a factor in the criticism than it is in the praise.

  25. By the way, for the sore loser people, great players rarely are good sports about it. Go ask people around Michael Jordan. Manning didn’t congratulate Drew Brees, which Newton did do for him. Aaron Rodgers says every time his team loses in the playoffs that his team beat themselves. If you have one of these singular-focused people as your QB, it’s a good thing because they’re not worried about the criticism and want to win more than be liked. I know I’d rather have that guy than the ah shucks, I’m okay with losing this huge game that my team fought for 20 weeks to get to and lose in front of the biggest audience every year.

  26. baltimoresnativeson says:
    Aug 15, 2016 1:31 PM
    Racism still exists but the majority of folks judge you by your character in my experience.

    I am a black male.

    Folks don’t like Cam because he’s immature and pouts often.

    Didn’t hear these complaints about….

    Russell Wilson
    Randall Cunningham
    Steve Mcnair
    Doug Williams
    Or even Tyrod Taylor for Pete’s sake.

    **************************************************************************************************************

    As a Black Man, I respectfully disagree with you.

    I know that on a daily basis I am judged and I judge others based on physical first impressions. From the way a person dresses (shabby or neatly dressed), to the way a person talks(“proper English” or “Slanguage”) neighborhood/school district a person lives in, type of car a person drives(Rims/Tints/Aftermarket Stereo) all of these things factor in to Pre-conceived notions THAT WE ALL HAVE. In a perfect world we would “all get to know the content of one’s character” before passing judgement BUT, THAT’S JUST NOT REALITY.

  27. Hey, good for him. I respect the fact that he’s owning his personality and not hiding behind racism as the cause. It is a personality thing. He’s demonstrative, flamboyant, and sometimes childish because he can’t control his emotions. It just is what it is. At least he’s willing to see it plainly.
    Who knows if he will ever overcome his impulses. This is at least a good first step.
    I’ve said it before. He’s a hell of an athlete; definitely in the top five of QBs, maybe even top two. I just wish he could get his mind right.

  28. Huh.. Way to say the political right thing but you and the I know better. Its always gonna be about racism. That is the reason why you are getting bashed so much.

  29. Growing up in Oakland I’d agree with Cam. Now that I’ve lived in a lily white community in the deserts of Oregon I can tell you there are people that will make it about race. Sad but true.

  30. Cam will never convince race baiters that it isn’t about race. In my opinion, a majority of people… A vast majority, as in almost all people, couldn’t care less about race. It seems, if we dare be critical of a quarterback, and he is black, it is racism. Yet we can be critical about any other player at any position, regardless of race and it is never called racism.

    Cam has made people respect him more by not playing the race game. He does some great things on the field and he does a lot of good off the field. He has some issues with his attitude when he doesn’t play well. He has to learn that the position he plays is always evolving and he needs to get better. He is good, not great. He is gaining the maturity that will make him a great player in the future.

    Anyway, good on Cam for not falling for the ideology that his race is somehow more important than the game. Have to respect that.

  31. If there was blatant racism among NFL fans then there wouldn’t be an NFL and there’d be a few hundred less millionaires.

  32. Watch it Cam, don’t tell that to the white media, they live off of all this racism stuff and love throwing kerosene on the fire.

  33. I love Cam, but I have to disagree with him on this one. The GOP has a candidate running for president on a platform of “Make America White Again.” Not everyone in this country has moved beyond racism.

  34. I only lambast this jerk because he broke the honor code in college twice and never paid a price for being a cheater. Then he did steal a laptop and hid it from the police.

    And then his unprofessional actions last year during the season and super drool where he had unsportsmanlike celebrations and did not do his job to recover a fumble.

    There are many things to ridicule this clown for – his skin color doesn’t even factor into the top 100.

  35. Refreshing comments from Newton. Finally an athlete who faces criticism doesn’t play the race card. I just became a bigger Newton fan.

  36. Pretty simple Cam. If you are going to showboat when you’re winning, you also have to be humble when you lose. We all grown up learning the fundamentals of learning good sportsmanship… I don’t care for showing up the teams you are beating, but I would find it far more tolerable if you were humble when you lose. As a Broncos fan I was very pleased to see the defense humble you in a way you have never experienced in your career after all of the showboating last season.

  37. Now, just because I agree that he’s not being criticized now because of his race, don’t’ get it twisted. It does still come up way too much in this day and age when you had stupid people actually comparing him to a movie character or Jameis Winston to Jamarcus Russell, or any time a black QB takes too many sacks, we automatically get it thrown out that he can’t read defenses but players like Matthew Stafford (who had his offense simplified last year when Lombardi got fired) and Ryan Tannehill can always have their excess sacks attributed to line play alone, the receivers, or a combination of both. I’m pretty indiscriminant about that regardless of color. For instance, the Viking line should be better, but Bridgewater sometimes holds it too long like Stafford and Tannehill do and thus gets sacked a bit more than he should.

  38. Not sure why Cam is taking grief over this one. Probably the most mature thing he’s said publicly since that post-SB interview fiasco. Props to him for owning his own opinion.

  39. So many people were Cam Newton fans. They loved him. He had finally arrived. Then he laid an egg in the super bowl. Those same fans who loved him suddenly didn’t sound like they liked him very much. He didn’t sound or look like the hero we thought he was. But that all could change again this year. Fans just want a winner. There’s a ton of racism for sure, but the fans loved this guy up until the super bowl. A lot of fans dog Tom Brady and Peyton Manning too. Through all the criticism of those two HOF QBs, I’ve never heard anyone attribute it to race.

  40. People are so incredibly sensitive these days, I think with the advent of social media, peoples natural insecurities are becoming even more pronounced. And with social media giving them a platform to flap their gums, it gives credence and validity to their own weaknesses.

    So instead of focusing on strength, positivity, or improving ones self, people now latch on to the most basic, and primitive of urges which contain literally zero percent logic, reason, or any sort of even pre-human higher cognitive function, and they run with it… And they just run with it…

    And here we are. “is it racist?” “isn’t it racist?” “its not racist.”.

    It doesn’t matter. Man, we have so little time on this beautiful planet, and THIS is what consumes us.

    P.S., I criticize Cam Newton because he is a show off who thinks he is better than everyone else, so to see him act like a little baby lying down on the sideline during the Super Bowl while he is getting his butt HANDED TO HIM on a silver platter by Von Miller was glorious. Schadenfreude, glorious, glorious Schadenfreude. I laughed, but hey at least I understand and admit to my own flaws.

  41. People don’t like him because of the way he acts, not because of the color of his skin. If the dude conducted himself with some maturity, some sportmanship, and some respect for his opponents, he might not be getting all the flak he’s been getting.

  42. eagleslayer says:
    Aug 15, 2016 3:38 PM

    Of course it’s racism. Geez, we only have a presidential candidate whose entire campaign is built on racism.
    ———-
    Sorry, Obama can’t run for a third term.

  43. It was something bandied about heading into the Super Bowl with Newton sharing his opinion that “an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”

    As soon as I heard Newton refer to himself in this way it was pretty clear he was introducing race to the conversation about himself, which actually made me think he was becoming sufficiently distracted enough to lose the game. Why not just keep it a conversation about your athleticism?…. Regardless of how great you think you are I think I can handle seeing whatever you are doing on the field. There have been some pretty athletic QBs in the previous decades, both black and white…. Steve McNair and Jim McMann a couple of my favorites of all time…: Trust me we can all handle what you are doing…

  44. jetsjetsjetsnow ,

    No, you’re just revealing what you feel because I doubt that it’s lost on Newton that he wasn’t the first black QB who played in that game. Russell Wilson had just played in it back to back years, lol. However, you took that he was talking about race despite him never mentioning it, but he’s the one with the problem. He was talking about a QB who is more in line with how NBA stars primarily market themselves, which is in line with an urban or hip hop backdrop. Pretty simple to understand that with the whole reason he was asked that question in the first place on Super Bowl row was because of that stupid dance he did last year, which has it’s roots in the hip hop community. But hey, Newton’s the one who “brought that up for you” despite not bringing it up at all. By the way, a white kid, since millions of them have grown up on hip hop too, could come along and do that in a few years too but just hasn’t yet,s ort of like this wild white guy who raps really well, Eminem. So yeah, not a race thing.

  45. laserw says:
    Aug 15, 2016 2:46 PM
    I only lambast this jerk because he broke the honor code in college twice and never paid a price for being a cheater. Then he did steal a laptop and hid it from the police.

    And then his unprofessional actions last year during the season and super drool where he had unsportsmanlike celebrations and did not do his job to recover a fumble.

    There are many things to ridicule this clown for – his skin color doesn’t even factor into the top 100.

    ******************************************************************************************************************

    Well if you’re gonna “lambast the jerk” atleast have your facts in order please!!

    First and foremost, Cam Newton NEVER STOLE A LAPTOP! He purchased a Stolen Laptop. Theft by Receiving is not “Stealing a Lap Top”, That is a HUGE DIFFERENCE!! Some Folks seriously think that Cam went in to someone’s dorm room and “lifted” a Lap Top!! Lol

    What he did was wrong, but keep it 100, how many of us have bought something that we know in all honesty was obtained/gotten by ill advised means? I’ll be the first to admit I have. But I don’t claim to be Holier than Thou or without transgressions/sin……………..

    So you keep holding an incident that a 19 YO kid went thru against him until when??? Lol Forever??? I’d sure as hell hope you’re not a parent !!!! Lol

  46. We all know after last season, that Cam needed to grow up a bit.
    I know he gives back to the community and the kids, which is great.
    But what I hate the most, and the media fuels the topic, is when someone says something negative about a black person, they are considered a racist.
    I blame social media and TV media for that.

    Watching sports my whole life, ive never looked at that persons skin color when judging his talent.
    Cam has a ton of talent, and once he can control his emotions and becomes more mature, all these naysayers will go away, and so will those idiot racist.
    I’m not a fan of the Panthers or Cam, but I respect them!!

  47. doctorpancake says:
    Aug 15, 2016 7:26 PM

    If the haters in the comments section did 1/100th of the charity work that Cam does…

    —————————————————————————-
    Just finished reading an article about an instagram post where some fan caught Cam Newton bringing 2 big bags of food, from a restaurant the team just ate at, to a homeless guy at a bus stop before the Baltimore preseason game. Florio and Co. will throw him under the bus for “seeming” sulky at his press conference and wont make any mention of this. And if they did the Cam haters would just say “photo opportunity” even though no media was around. I’m not trying to “bring people to Cam” anymore. Cam is nice to his critics, his critics are brutal to him, eventually people will recognize who the real A-holes are.

  48. Aaaaaaah judging by these comments, folks still love to hate on Cam!! And I like the fact that he doesn’t care what you think. So keep hating and judging. He’ll make his millions and continue to win!!!! To dive or not to dive on a ball??! Raise your blood pressure over that and anything else he does!! I hope he does a hokie pokie dance in the endzones this year to further tick folks off! LOL #CP4L!!!!!

  49. Newton is NOT a role model, and anyone who thinks he is needs to have their values seriously questioned. He is simply a punk who is all about himself. End of story…

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