Opinion

Yes, I Believe Peyton Manning

The cynicism in Christine Brennan’s USA Today article, “Should we believe in Peyton Manning?” is repulsive.

Ms Brennan scolded everyone who believes Manning’s denial that he used performance enhancing drugs. “Haven’t we learned anything from all our other heroes who ended up lying to us?” Ms Brennan also made a snarky reference to Manning being “squeaky clean.”

Following in the footsteps of his pro football Hall of Fame dad, Archie Manning, Peyton has been a class act throughout his stellar career. Peyton has been a true professional – a gentleman who highly respects the game. Common decency demands that we give Peyton the benefit of the doubt. Of course, it is impossible to fully know a human being. But, Peyton has earned our respect and belief in him.

My dad has been a Christian pastor of the highest caliber all of my life. What if a sexual misconduct allegation arose against him? What kind of son or friend would I be not to defend my dad to the hilt until proven otherwise? According to Ms Brennan’s reasoning, I should be open to the possibility of my dad being guilty of misconduct simply because other ministers were proven guilty. Based on years of witnessing dad’s character, I owe him my loyalty.

Ms Brennan’s negative attitude and venom reflects the times in which we live. For some reason, squeaky cleanness is off-putting to many in the mainstream media; a reason to target such annoying goody-two-shoes individuals for destruction. It is disgusting.

Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson was mocked in the media for his decision to save having sex with his girlfriend for their wedding night. By the way, out-of-wedlock births is a huge problem in the black community; leading to poverty, gang violence, incarceration and death. A highly successful black pro athlete like Wilson touting abstinence could play a powerful role in influencing black youths.

Wilson and another black pro quarterback Robert Griffin, III were trashed in sports media for not being authentically black; not enough ghetto or thug-isms in their dress, behavior and way of speaking.

The over-the-top media hatred for Tim Tebow for his squeaky cleanness is legendary.

Back to Peyton Manning. Despite there being no evidence that Manning is lying, Brennan acts as though the burden is on Manning to prove his innocence. This is outrageous, shameful and classless. But that is how the media rolls when it comes to good guys.

While this is my first time reading an article by Ms. Brennan, I suspect if Peyton Manning announced that he wanted a sex change, she would be firmly in his corner.

Peyton Manning is a hero; a promoter of values and excellence not by bloviating, but by simply being himself. I suspect this is Brennan’s real issue with him.

We are truly living in trying times folks. It reminds me of a song from my childhood, sang in my dad’s Baltimore storefront church titled, “We’re Livin’ in the Last Days.” The lyrics are “They’re callin’ wrong right. They’re callin’ right wrong. Surely, we’re livin’ in the last days.”

Hang in there Peyton. I believe you 100 percent.