A Mom's Open Letter to Cam Newton: "He Looks Like a Spoiled Brat"

Yesterday, we shared a collection of Cam Newton is a douchebag memes, with a number of the images chiding the quarterback, who'll be leading the Carolina Panthers against your Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50 on February 7, for his exuberant — and some would say excessive — manner of celebrating his accomplishments.

Act like you've been there before when you're scoring a touchdown? That's not Newton's style.

The objections to his approach are neatly encapsulated in an open letter Nashville mom Rosemary Plorin shared with the Charlotte Observer this past November.

In it, she chides Newton for being a poor role model for her nine-year-old daughter because of the "chest puffs," "pelvic thrusts" "arrogant struts and the ‘in your face’ taunting" he displayed during a victory over her team, the Tennessee Titans.

Plorin's scolding was roundly ripped in many quarters, with one site labeling her the "Donkey of the Day." But she's gotten plenty of support for her viewpoint as well.

Decide for yourself: Check out her complete letter below.

As for us, we hope the Broncos' defense gives Newton few opportunities to celebrate....

Dear Mr. Newton,

Congratulations on your win in Nashville today. Our team played well, but yours played better. Kudos to the Panthers organization.

That game happened to be my nine year old daughter’s first live NFL experience. She was surprised to see so many Panthers’ fans sitting in our section of the stadium; that doesn’t happen much at fourth grade football games. And she was excited we were near the end zone, so we would be close to the “action,” particularly in the second half.

Because of where we sat, we had a close up view of your conduct in the fourth quarter. The chest puffs. The pelvic thrusts. The arrogant struts and the ‘in your face’ taunting of both the Titans’ players and fans. We saw it all.

I refuse to believe you don’t realize you are a role model. You are paid millions of dollars every week to play hard and be a leader. In the off season you’re expected to make appearances, support charities, and inspire young kids to pursue your sport and all sports. With everything the NFL has gone through in recent years, I’m confident they have advised that you are, by virtue of your position and career choice, a role model.

And because you are a role model, your behavior brought out like behavior in the stands. Some of the Panthers fans in our section began taunting the hometown fans. Many Titans fans booed you, a few offering instructive, but not necessarily family friendly, suggestions as to how you might change your behavior.

My daughter sensed the change immediately – and started asking questions. Won’t he get in trouble for doing that? Is he trying to make people mad? Do you think he knows he looks like a spoiled brat?

I didn’t have great answers for her, and honestly, in an effort to minimize your negative impact and what was otherwise a really fun day, I redirected her attention to the cheerleaders and mascot.

I could tell she was still thinking about it as we boarded a shuttle back to our car. “I guess he doesn’t have kids or a Mom at home watching the game,” she added.

I don’t know about your family life Mr. Newton, but I think I’m safe in saying thousands of kids watch you every week. You have amazing talent and an incredible platform to be a role model for them. Unfortunately, what you modeled for them today was egotism, arrogance and poor sportsmanship.

Is that what your coaches and mentors modeled for you, Mr. Newton?

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts