Dannon sacks Newton after comments
Dannon, the maker of Oikos yogurt, cut ties with spokesman Cam Newton on Thursday following what the company perceives as “sexist” comments the Carolina quarterback made to a female reporter.
Company spokesperson Michael Neuwirth released a statement saying it was “shocked and disheartened” at the former league MVP’s behavior and comments toward Jourdan Rodrigue, a Charlotte Observer reporter.
When Rodrigue asked Newton about wide receiver Devin Funchess’ route running Wednesday, Newton laughed and said, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes. It’s funny.”
The Dannon statement noted the company perceives Newton’s comments as “sexist and disparaging to all women. ... It’s simply not ok to belittle anyone based on gender. We have shared our concerns with Cam and will no longer work with him.”
Newton hasn’t issued an apology. He was sitting at his locker Thursday on his phone, but declined comment through the team’s public relations staff.
The NFL released a statement on Wednesday saying that Newton’s response to the question was “just plain wrong and disrespectful to the exceptional female reporters and all journalists who cover our league.”
Panthers coach Ron Rivera addressed the situation briefly at his press conference Thursday, saying, “I think Cam made a mistake. I understand he had a conversation where he pretty much said he shouldn’t have said, what he said.”
Rodrigue issued a statement Wednesday saying she and Newton did speak after the news conference, but said the quarterback didn’t apologize for his remarks.
Rodrigue was back in the locker room on Thursday, flanked by Mike Persinger, the executive sports editor of The Charlotte Observer.
She issued an apology herself Thursday after coming under fire for using a racial slur in tweets she posted about four years ago. The tweets were first reported by BlackSportsOnline.com.