As told by some white boys from the Carolinas lol
Why do people hate Cam Newton?
- He is not on your team– I will admit that if this man was not on the Carolina Panthers and was on the Atlanta Falcons I would find no greater joy than in stopping him (because he is unstoppable).
- He does it differently– This is for the football purists and non-millennials that love a simple drop back QB that is a “game manager”. They want a quarterback that is the silent leader, a general leading his troops who supplants his own personality for that of the team. (Even though they would more than likely have loved Joe Namath or Dandy Don) They don’t want to see Cam come in and change the game and win because that goes against everything in “the book”. Fair enough. We are about to witness Super Bowl 50 and possibly the changing of the guards. Times are changing in the NFL, as are the styles of play. The future will probably hold more quarterbacks like Cam Newton and fewer like Peyton Manning.
- Race– Okay. Let’s talk about the elephant in the room. This is certainly not the only piece of the puzzle, but we believe this is the part that white people (we are two white guys) want to sweep under the rug and ignore or we believe that it is not our place to talk about it. Being able to ignore white privilege and not talk about white privilege is…well… white privilege.
The time has come to ask ourselves why is it when a white player celebrates in a sport people laugh it off and call him confident, BUT when a black player does they are labeled cocky, and people shake their heads in disapproval and call it “showboating”? Just maybe, Cam Newton is helping shine a light on this double standard for a lot of white people in the Carolinas. We love him and we are seeking to understand why it’s not universal.
We see this man every week doing things like hosting dinners for underprivileged youth in Charlotte. We see him visit and connect with children with cancer. We see him donate thousands of dollars to schools. We see him visit the families of the victims in Charleston. We see a “ man that has never been convicted of a crime while playing for Carolina, a man that has never abused or beat up his girlfriend, a man never convicted of a drug charge or DUI, a man never arrested.”(Marlon Jones) and we turn around to the world with pride only to hear him called “classless”. We are left incredulous and we want to know why this is happening!
Do they hate him because of a smile and a dance or is seeing a successful man of color in a position of power subconsciously scaring them? It’s a question worth asking, not just of others, but of ourselves.
Are we witnessing a watershed moment? White people on social media, on the radio and at the bars in Charlotte are having open discussions about how race is playing a role in how a man we adore is perceived outside this community. We are having to confront the fact that it is unfair and that if he were white this would likely not be happening. We are asking ourselves about our own feelings in past situations. White men (and women) are talking about white privilege, and in a southern town no the less!
“BUT He stole a laptop in college!” Yea and Peyton Manning was sued for pulling down his pants and sitting on a trainer’s face when she was working on his foot ( I’m sure all of us are proud of everything we did when we were 19 and 20. Right?) We won’t even go into the HGH investigation . You probably won’t see people mention these things on facebook, but you will see how “Cam should pay attention this week because Peyton can teach him a thing or two about class.” Why? Because he is an older white man and you are more comfortable with that?
Cam was viewed as a “thug” from the beginning of his career and he was put in the position of having to disprove prejudices and stereotypes. Once again, he’s guilty until he proves himself innocent. Though the perception of him may slowly be changing, the people of the Carolinas are left wondering why it seems to have taken him longer to win the favor of the public.
P.S. Maybe Ryan Clark can put into perspective for you….
It is not as much his black skin but his culture. The fact he has not adhered to the typical white Quarterback culture and has remained himself.
“For so many years black qbs didn’t have to conform to a way of playing quarterback. They had to conform to a way of behavior”- Ryan Clark