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No matter how well Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has played this year and no matter that his NFL team is still undefeated (well, sort of), Newton has decided he will not allow any dissension in his house.
That apparently is why Newton—who is an adult, mind you—took the banner from a family of Green Bay Packers fans who were in Charlotte to watch Sunday’s game between the two squads and disposed of it without their permission.
See that family of people in the camouflaged hats? Yeah, one of them is an Army veteran from Fayetteville, North Carolina, and he didn’t appreciate Newton—ho also is wearing camo, but is decidedly not an Army vet—doing this.
“We thought it was a joke at first, but he never came back with the banner,” Mike Dobs, the one whose sign (which he said cost $500 to make) was ripped away, told the Charlotte Observer. “That’s when I went to security and told them he stole it. The first officer I talked to just laughed.”
Said Newton: “I was passing, the sign was dangling. Either somebody was going to have to take it off or I’d take it off. And it’s no disrespect to nobody, it’s more of a respect to the stadium.”
Yes, the stadium—which isn’t actually alive, mind you—deserves more respect than the Army vet who happens to root for another team. Later, the Panthers said they had reached out to Dobs and would replace the banner.
But proving that injecting a little humor is always welcome into what’s basically a silly story, a number of Newton’s teammates jumped to his defense on Twitter on Monday. And all them said it was his own fault that the banner was confiscated.
Funny that all of these tweets were posted in a two-hour span. It’s almost seems like they had it planned out and everything.
Josh Katzowitz is a staff writer at the Daily Dot specializing in YouTube and boxing. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times. A longtime sports writer, he's covered the NFL for CBSSports.com and boxing for Forbes. His work has been noted twice in the Best American Sports Writing book series.