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Cam Newton electrifies crowds with his formidable athletic ability week in and out  for the Carolina Panthers but the star quarterback is very much a media firebrand. Newton sat down with GQ magazine for a revealing interview in which he said that while he’s a mentioned being a Black quarterback in times past that the nation is “beyond” race.

The GQ profile focuses mostly on both on Newton’s skills as a player and his controversial celebrations after touchdowns. The piece also highlights his fashion choices and his desire to entertain on the field. However, it was his discussion on race that was most head-turning.

From GQ:

In January, right before the Super Bowl, you said: “I’m an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”

“I don’t want this to be about race, because it’s not. It’s not. Like, we’re beyond that. As a nation.”

You really think so?

“Yeah. I mean, you bring it to people’s attention. But after that, that’s it.”

What Newton meant by the statement above is hard to determine, but he isn’t usually one to stay quiet on a controversial subject no matter the topic. But Newton’s stance is rather questionable considering he has acknowledged his Blackness as something that stands out so why he didn’t expound on his point feels flat.

All Newton has to go is step outside of his celebrity bubble to know that race is still very much at the center of the conversation.