Phil Mushnick has a reputation for being a pot-stirring columnist, but he hit a new low on Sunday after ripping Adrian Peterson’s character and blaming the running back for allowing his 2-year-old son to be beaten to death.
In a column for the New York Post, Mushnick tried to draw a connection between Peterson and guys like Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong. Mushnick argued that we have allowed Peterson’s accomplishments on the field to color our perception of his character off the field, much like we did with Tiger and Lance. What evidence did he use? A reckless driving incident and incident at a nightclub where the charges against Peterson for resisting arrest were dropped.
But Peterson’s biggest offense, in Mushnick’s eyes, was playing in the Minnesota Vikings’ game on Sunday, two days after his 2-year-old son died after being beaten.
Here’s what Mushnick wrote:
"Still, I’m stuck with what I’ve got. And it’s sickening the NFL’s latest MVP, hours after his son died — allegedly murdered — declared he was “ready to roll,” ready to play football.
Me? I’d be fighting for breath, my knees weak with grief, demanding to know why, who, how. Then, I suspect, I’d seethe with rage, swearing retribution. I even think I’d take off a day or two from work. Maybe a week."
Let’s put aside how awful it is to judge someone for the way they react to such a tragedy. Let’s put aside it’s therapeutic for some athletes to play alongside their teammates following a tragedy. If you thought that argument was bad, Mushnick’s column got even worse.
The worst part of Mushnick’s column was when he essentially blamed Peterson for the young boy’s death. According to Mushnick, Peterson didn’t provide the child with a suitable home environment.
"With his resources, how could Peterson, the NFL’s MVP, have allowed his son to remain in such an environment? Did he not know, or not care? Or not care to know? Or not know to care?
Peterson couldn’t have provided his son a better life, a longer life?
Money can’t buy love, but having signed a $96 million deal, he could not have provided his child — apparently his second from a “baby mama” — a safe home?"
Well, gee whiz, let me help you out there since you’re not exactly Mr. Current Affairs, Mushnick. If you actually followed the news, you might understand that Peterson didn’t provide a better home for the young boy because he only recently found out he was the boy’s father. The mother of the child thought her ex-boyfriend was the father, but when that paternity test came up negative, she went to Peterson. And Peterson reportedly reacted well, asked how he could help, and even made plans to see the child.
Maybe before you start accusing people of having terrible character and saying the young boy never had a shot in life, you might actually want to do some research to learn about the story so you don’t tear someone apart without knowing the circumstances.
More Quotes from the article
"The suspect in the beating murder of Peterson’s 2-year-old is the boyfriend of Peterson’s “baby mama” — now the casual, flippant, detestable and common buzz-phrase for absentee, wham-bam fatherhood."
"Maybe Peterson’s son is just one more stands-to-reason murder victim, just another child born to just another “baby mama,” one more kid who never had a shot, anyway. Maybe, by now, even if we can’t accept it, we can expect it.
Fun Fact: This isn't the first racist column Phil's done.