UPDATE: After facing backlash for his sexist comments toward a female sports reporter, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton released a video apology that quickly went viral on Twitter.
In just under two minutes, Newton clarified that his intentions were not to come across sexist, maintaining that as a father of two daughters he encourages gender equality and teaches his own children that they can be "anything that they want to be."
"If you are a person who took offense to what I said, I sincerely apologize to you," Newton said in the clip.
While Newton says his apologetic sentiments are sincere, it is highly likely that he issued the video under pressure from the NFL, the Carolina Panthers, and his sponsors, among others.
Nevertheless, for many people, Newton has already left them with a bad taste in their mouths, and his presumably staged apology isn't enough to smooth things over.
admiration and respect? lol... you think he apologized on his own? his agent forced him after sponsors dropped him.— Steve Bruss (@sbruss81) October 6, 2017
#CamNewton. Her name is Jourdan Rodriguez. She’s the one you didn’t mention in your apology. Apologize to her. Specifically and directly.— thisGringo (@smbeckley) October 6, 2017
This situation with #CamNewton just reminds me that an early, sincere apology can keep things from escalating into a costly mess.— Adrienne Lawrence (@AdrienneLaw) October 5, 2017
Hey, #CamNewton, you're the worst. You laughed in a woman's face. We don't accept your forced apology. Get.— Sara Candice (@sara_candice) October 6, 2017
Just saw #CamNewton "apology" & my immediate impression was he didn't believe a word he was saying. His facial expressions said it all...— Timothy Mogavero (@TimothyMogavero) October 6, 2017
Here's the video of Cam Newton saying "it's funny to hear a female talk about routes" pic.twitter.com/hd9Kg4CCeu— Carlin & Reese (@CarlinReeseWIP) October 4, 2017
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, who won the 2015 NFL “Most Valuable Player Award,” still needs to win over sexism.
For Newton it was funny to see a female reporter at a news conference getting into the details of football, even though analyzing the game without participating is not rocket science.
From Jessica Mendoza analyzing Major League Baseball games on ESPN, Beth Mowins covering NFL games for CBS, to ESPN’s Doris Burke who is a part of the broadcast team for the NBA, several female reporters cover sports. And they’ve been doing that for decades.
And they are very good at their jobs.
But for Newton, to have knowledge of the game, it seems gender matters a lot.
Just recently he made a sexist comment to sports broadcaster Jourdan Rodrigue, who was questioning him about wide receiver Devin Funchess’s running routes.
"It's funny to hear a female talk about routes like -- it's funny," he responded with a smirk on his face, stressing on the word “route.”
Rodrigue, a reporter for the Charlotte Observer, was quick to express her feelings on Twitter.
I don't think it's "funny" to be a female and talk about routes. I think it's my job.— Jourdan Rodrigue (@JourdanRodrigue) October 4, 2017
Someone asked her if she tried confronting the football player rather than putting everything on social media. Turns out Rodrigue tried and that experience was even worse.
I spoke with him after and it was worse. I chose not to share, because I have an actual job to do today and one he will not keep me from.— Jourdan Rodrigue (@JourdanRodrigue) October 4, 2017
His comments were anything but funny. The NFL quickly distanced itself from Newton’s sexist remarks.
“The comments are just plain wrong and disrespectful to the exceptional female reporters and all journalists who cover our league. They do not reflect the thinking of the league,” stated NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy.
The Panthers were also quick to post a statement.
"I have spoken with Jourdan and Cam and I know they had a conversation where he expressed regret for using those words," a spokesman said. "We strive as a department to make the environment for media comfortable for everyone covering the team."
Several people were outraged and expressed discontent over his comments on social media.
Who let that woman out of the kitchen to even bother Cam Newton with that question in the first place?— Mark Dice (@MarkDice) October 4, 2017
Ladies - do not feel forced into defending our sports knowledge. This is on Cam Newton - NOT ON US. Unacceptable in 2017 to go back to this— Laura Okmin (@LauraOkmin) October 4, 2017
uh oh cam Newton pic.twitter.com/zVuMmoHWwz— Tony X. (@soIoucity) October 4, 2017
Cam Newton is about to be in social media prison. https://t.co/S45EnEmogw— Mike Cernovich 🇺🇸 (@Cernovich) October 4, 2017
Better get used to it, Cam Newton. We "females" are not going anywhere. We love football, KNOW football, enjoy talking about football.— Amy Lawrence (@ALawRadio) October 4, 2017
I know far too many women who can and do talk circles around men when it comes to sports, and not just football.— Patrik Walker (@VoiceOfTheStar) October 4, 2017
My respect level for Cam Newton is officially at -100 below zero.
Grow up, son.
You know what was really funny? Watching Cam Newton lose the Super Bowl. https://t.co/ZlKSH2eHjs— VF Castro (@TheVFCastro) October 4, 2017
People like Cam Newton are exactly why I do what I do.— Melissa Jacobs (@thefootballgirl) October 4, 2017
maybe if someone explains to him the hitch in his logic, he'll realize why his joke fell flat, go out, and post an apology— Mina Kimes (@minakimes) October 4, 2017
Newton has yet to make a public remark about the incident.
Thumbnail Credits: Reuters, Greg M. Cooper