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Cam Newton exemplifies ignorance, offends female reporter


Ignorance at its finest was on display last week when Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton made controversial comments to female reporter Jourdan Rodrigue during a press conference.

In the middle of asking a well thought-out question regarding the physicality of wide receiver Devin Funchess’ routes, Rodrigue was interrupted with laugher by Newton. Strike one. When Rodrigue finished her question, Newton responded, saying, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes.” Strike two. Newton’s facial reaction after he made such a sexist statement. Strike three.

The overall issue with this is the fact that Newton blatantly used Rodrigue’s gender to explain why he thought the question was entertaining enough to laugh about it. As a female sports reporter myself, I find his initial response to her question extremely offensive for the fact that it indicates how female sports reporters are not expected to ask just in-depth questions about sports. Why are in-depth questions surprising to hear when it comes from a female voice? Gender has nothing to do with how well someone is able to do his or her job. Period.

The part that is hard to stomach is the face that Newton displayed for everyone at the conference, and now online. His facial reaction can be interpreted in many ways, but the bottom line is that it was offensive to not only Rodrigue, but to other female reporters as well. It is rude, it is unprofessional and it is downright sexist.

Post press conference, Rodrigue confronted Newton with the intention of giving him a chance to apologize. Nothing. It wasn’t until Newton lost sponsors – Dannon being a major one – and public support that he issued an apology via Twitter.

“After careful thought, I realized that my word choice was extremely degrading and disrespectful to women,” Newton stated as he began his apology. The question that lies here is whether he actually thought about it for himself, or if he was pressured by the team and the NFL to make this statement. Personally, I felt this apologize was created in order to patch his already tattered image. If Newton were truly sorry, he would have apologized to Rodrigue after the press conference when he had the chance. Maybe then this story wouldn’t be as big as it already is. But, it is. And it will not be forgotten.

So thank you Cam Newton for showing the public why women are continuously fighting for a life without sexism – a life without ignorance.


*Photo by VoteForCelebs via*

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Cam Newton exemplifies ignorance, offends female reporter