Should teams be able to tell players not to get tattoos or piercings?

Poll choices
125 Comments

  • Simon Worman - 8 years ago

    I guess the 52 % doesnt understand the concept of freedom of choice

  • Direct Democracy - 8 years ago

    I find it amazing how may rigid communist rule abider nerds we have here. “In the real world employers can say no piercings or tattoos”. What a moronic statement. I guess an employer could say no, but they risk getting sued as well, and they would lose in court. An employer could get around this by not hiring anyone with tattoos or piercings, or an employer could have a policy requesting that you not wear unusual piercings & wear appropriate clothing and things like that, but no one can tell you what to do with your body.

    We live in America, where we have freedom. Some of you idiots have no idea what freedom is. Just because you don’t like it too does not make it law. Plus, why would anyone want to give employers any more power than they already have? I guess many people just don’t realize how our 4th amendment rights are being eroded. Some of these super ego comments are truly sickening, what a bunch of commies or just plain dumb stupid people. Personally, I hate tattoos and piercings and I think any type of piercing or tattoo is just a form of body mutilation and I don’t have any, but to each their own.

  • blackNgold4Life - 8 years ago

    This is another case of a
    old rich dude with no clue of the culture of today's NFL player.Its sports not Wall Street.

  • Rick - 8 years ago

    I think this owner for the panthers forget who will be watching these games, when I go to my local bar every Sunday to watch football I look around and everybody has tattoos and some have there favorite team tattooed on them selves ,..this is football man ,clean cut ,give me a brake.times change and this old owner needs to get used to it!! That's the beautiful thing about being free ,you can do whatever you want to your body,me and a friend went to Italy for vacation ,we went to this small little village and the young kids there were all tattooed up,of course the older folks didn't like it but they also understand times change.if I owned a company I wouldn't care what somebody looked like as long as they are good people and they got the job done,looks shouldn't matter!! Soon as the older generation dies and then someday my generation takes over ,my generation will be way more laid back because we will all have tattoos our selves!

  • Rick - 8 years ago

    I think it's bs.if anything people around cams age and younger will think it's cool he has tattoos ,not make the panthers look bad.this isn't the 1950s. 1 out of 5 people ages 18 to 29 of atleast have one tattoo in This country! Tattoo has spread like wild fire all over the world,I got pulled over by a cop with two arms sleeves covers in tattoos ,he even had s tattoo on his neck.all my friends have tattoos and some of them work for some big time companies and it's fine, if anything more people will relate to Cam having a tattoo than not..A lot of cops get there tattoos while they are in the military ! My lawyer has a tattoo ,my doctor who is a female has a tattoo on her foot! This guy is old and dosent know crap,in his generation you either were military or were in jail of to had a tattoo,it's not like that anymore,moms,dads,kids,grandpas,my friends 87 year old grandma just got a tattoo of all her kids and grandkids grown from a tree ,its cool!!freaking everybody,when I go to the beach everybody is tattooed up and showing them off!

  • Ignorance - 8 years ago

    Even if you want to say players are outside contractors vs employees, the team is the one paying them. If they don't want guys with tats & piercings , they don't HAVE to hire them. Either way, you work for them. They are the boss, and the boss makes the rules. Plain and simple

  • Ignorance - 8 years ago

    I can't believe how fucking ignorant so many people are. Land of the free and crap like that. Yeah, Cam is still FREE to do whatever he wants. That doesn't mean he gets a FREE pass to the NFL. If all teams say no tats, that's their policy. Companies from the flower shop up the road to Walmart, to professional sports, they all can set their company policy and the employees must abide by it. So this has nothing to do with losing rights or your freedom. If you want to get paid from a particular source, you follow the rules. You don't like the rules, don't work there. It's that simple. Maybe the ink is seeping into peoples brains.

  • stevewhite2011 - 8 years ago

    You people are such hypocrites.
    You yell, kick and scream about your right to bear arms, freedom of speech and whine about your rights, but it's ok to tell a grown, free man he can't get tatoos? Football players are not employees, their contractors. They are organized by a union, and unless their is specific language in the CBA or rulebook saying that players can not get tatoos or peircings, then no one has any right to say what they can and cannot do with their skin or flesh, as long as they can perform.

  • Sticky Ditka - 8 years ago

    A) I love all the comments of "If he doesn't like it, he can play elsewhere." That's not going to happen, unless Richardson wants to cut the #1 pick overall that's supposed to turn his franchise around (on the field, not the fashion runway) and give him his $22 million contract for not playing a single game. That contract is fully guaranteed. And, no, Newton wouldn't end up in the UFL, several other teams would pick him up.

    B) Steve Smith has been the face of the franchise for years. He has tattoos. What's the difference?

    C) Piercings? I can imagine that maybe the whole facial/neck tattoos thing would look bad, but piercings? Unless he was going to go out Dennis Rodman style, who cares if the guy has an earring? Or a nose ring? I'm assuming the rule only applies to visible piercings.

  • some guy - 8 years ago

    for the people saying a company has a right to ask it employees to comply to an appearance code, you are 100% correct.
    That is not what is happening in this instance, however. This is a man being ask to conform to another man's desires. No other employees were asked to do this, and in fact many have gone completely against them.
    The follow-up question (conveniently not found in this article) proves that Newton was specifically singled out and that other persons in his same situation would NOT be asked to conform to the same standards. (He was asked if Peyton Manning could have a tattoo and he did not say no.)

  • Buddy Cianci - 8 years ago

    I think some of the old people have some growing up to do.

  • Aaron - 8 years ago

    Dont like it? Dont play for that team.

  • philosopher - 8 years ago

    Going on my old comment:
    you cant live on that stereotype. Really think about it first. And im not just talkin about your race. Please remember that Im not racist and i really respect all the races. sorry if im offending you somehow. Im just givin my opinion... in hope that someone can read my opinions or any opinions at all without comletely ignoring it and try to at least think about it.

  • Philosopher - 8 years ago

    oh yeah and all you guys talking about racisim... really. Yall need to grow up. i hate when people complain about racisim in everything. every race complains about how they get the bad end. I swear im not racist and i truly respect all the races.
    on many sites in the comments i find black men who say they are black and then say that they are being treated incorrectly because of race. I understand that does happen. maybe more frequently than other. i hear you and i understand. But i have a feeling that some of you r just going on a sterotype that you r always being treated wrongly.

  • Philosopher - 8 years ago

    i forgot to add this along with my other comment:
    everybody overuses there rights. All richardson, and I, and others like me want... is some decency.

  • Philosopher - 8 years ago

    we americans for some reason dont understand why freedom means something. All the people complaining about how Cam wont be getting freedom dont think about what they say. Freedom doesn't mean to do what you want just because you can. When freedom first came to be it was about not having to be given a set of rules that your forced to follow or else. All richardson is saying is that Cam is fine and he doesn't need to try to follow the pack. Cam is his own pack. Other players should follow him. Freedom is supposed to be about what you want, not just trying to be opposite of what others tell you to do. If cam is a good guy than he will know that its just a tatoo. it wont do much good for him. just because someone asks you to not overuse one of your rights doesnt mean that you need to get all fired up about it. Richardson just looked like he was coming on too strong because he had to. He had to becuase he knows that most players get tats and piecing just cuz they can. If he really knew that cam wasnt like the others he wouldn't have had be come on too strong. But at this point everybody in the world does what they want just cuz they can. Its not even what they really want anyways. And by the way this is my theory for why all problems in the world occur.

  • Doctora - 8 years ago

    JS - agree with you completely!

  • JS - 8 years ago

    I'm probably going to get blasted for this but I have a real hard time believing that Richardson would have asked this of a young white man. It just smacks of denigration for a wealthy older white man to ask those type of questions of a young black male. He stated Newton was dressed nicely and had a nice haircut (again, why mention those things unless you are trying to be patronizing), so why continue on and ask those questions? Just strikes me like a '50s white housewife interviewing the "the help". BTW, I am white.

  • Doctora - 8 years ago

    To gullyjuice

    What the hell are you talking about:

    "With your type of mentality, is the reason why a number of Black men find it difficult to find work because of this attitude of "If he can do it, I can do it too." Sounds like Monkey See - Monkey Doo mentality."

    First of all, you don't know anything about me or my mentality nor do I think you know anything about “number of black-men.”. You’re very presumptuous.

    It’s not about a “Monkey See - Monkey Doo mentality" (By the way it’s do not doo).
    Not sure about what type of black person you been around (I’m believe that you haven’t been around any and you are just regurgitating old stereotypes.); but the black-men I know don’t make excuses or pass blame. They pull themselves up by their “bootstraps” and keep it moving.

    The owner’s comments were offensive. He wouldn’t have asked or made those statements to Cam if he were white. It’s about fairness and equal access or in legal terms equal protection. You can’t prevent one person on a club or a job from doing something and exempt someone else. Rules should be applied equally or not at all.

  • BD - 8 years ago

    Small business? Some of the world's largest employers have "grooming standards," including mine. I can have one piercing, not more. And I can have tattoos, but they can't be visible. Yes, his employer has a right to tell him no tattoos and no piercing, just like he has a right to not sign the contract and not work for him. Take the job, take the money, take the rules.

  • BiGT - 8 years ago

    #@$&%#7 you JR! Next It'll be no white girls, no dreads and no soul food! Wake up JR it's no longer 1962.. it's 2011.. grown up, adult, Black MEN can do whatever they choose, just like you and any other adult!!!

  • BiGT - 8 years ago

    #@$&%#7 you JR! Next It'll no white girls, no dreads and no soul food! Wake up JR it's no longer 1962.. it's 2011.. grown up, adult, Black MEN can do whatever they choose, just like you and any other adult!!!

  • Lyle H - 8 years ago

    Of course an employer has every right to an employee what they may or may not do in their personal lives on their own time. And sometimes the courts will agree with the employer and other times the courts will agree with the employee.

    Too many seem to think that having a job, whether in the NFL or at the counter of McDonald's, is a "right". All a job is is an agreement between an employer and a potential employee to exchange something the employer has for something the employee has. And both sides are free, with certain limitations, to require specific (pre-)conditions.

  • anniem - 8 years ago

    Staff can't MAKE anyone, and they so much as said so. But someone who is poised to be the face of the francise would do so at his peril, and may not go as far in the franchise if he does. I think that's fair.

  • fenaray - 8 years ago

    If there's going to be a rule for one player then it should apply to all the players. Employers shouldn't selectively choose who must follow a particular rule. That being said, if the employer believes (and can quantify) that the tattoos and/or piercings would cause the business to suffer harm (lose money, customers) then it is within their legal right to restrict employees body art (appearance). It has been legally challenged and in positions where the employee comes into contact with the public, successfully upheld. A good example is Walt Disney World's appearance policy. The difference is though, they apply the policy consistently.

  • josh jones - 8 years ago

    Its positively amazing that people believe that an employer has any right to tell a person what they will do in their personal life on their own time. That is precisely why I will never work for anyone other than myself for the rest of my life. There are too many people who think its fun to preserve the status quo all day, and can't understand why the rest of us just don't do it, too. Its really a beautiful world. Too bad you can't tell it from the reflection you get in that shiny black boot you lick all day.

  • Lyle H - 8 years ago

    Meester Oh: Nobody OWNS the troops. Slavery was outlawed over a century ago! And you said it yourself: "once a military recruit signs a contract". And part of that contract is an agreement by the recruit to abide by military rules and regulations.

    Kebo72: Of course it's discriminatory if the policy is limited to Cam. Guess what? An employer is free to discriminate as they choose within certain bounds. And tats and piercings are well within those bounds.

    Pro football is not a game people. It's a very big business. And the players are simply employees of the various teams - all of which are free within the CBA terms to have personnel policies, written or unwritten, as they choose.

    And remember if a player doesn't like the policy regarding tats and piercings, he is free not to sigh the contract or he can attempt to get it voided if he can show that the policy was material to his signing and was not disclosed until after the player had signed.

  • Michael G - 8 years ago

    Ed you're retarded, that thinking was crushed a long time ago.

  • Michael G - 8 years ago

    I know several executives that if disrobed would be covered in tattoos. my opinion is if it is concealable then what's the harm in it. The world is changing, tattoo ink and piercings have bled in to the main stream. Live with it or turn a deaf ear.

  • Meester Oh - 8 years ago

    An employment contract is not a contract of ownership. Although once a military recruit signs a contract for military service and subsequently becomes property of the United States of America, the U.S. Army does not disallow tattoos while in service to the nation.
    We (The People of the United States of America) OWN the troops. No sports team owner OWNS their players, and until they understand that, they (sports team owners) need to be subjected to higher scrutiny in their statements, legal contracts and actions in their treatment of the players.
    If you don't like your players to have tattoos, don't hire or draft those who have them and write this explicitly in EACH AND EVERY CONTRACT you sign with players. PERIOD.
    Otherwise, shut up & GFY.

  • Darren - 8 years ago

    I also believe that they should not be able to wear their hair down over their name; may there should be a length allotment of just 2-3 inches below the bottom of the helmet?

  • CHARLIE - 8 years ago

    John sucks! If he gave me that kind of money,I'd get a face lift.

  • L Hall - 8 years ago

    Give him more money not to do it. That will solve it.

  • Romie - 8 years ago

    I feel it is acceptable for teams to "request" no tatoos/piercings, as a rule of thumb, but not insist upon it. There should be no repercussions if the "request" is ignored.

  • rod - 8 years ago

    " The owner comes off as a hypocrite at best and unfortunately a racist at worst."

    You may have a valid argument. Cam Newton and Jeremy Shockey are two different complete players. Shockey is a nobody in my opinion. Cam is the Future. Shockey does not sell tickets, Cam does. This is NOT a RACIAL move, but a smart, honorable, strategic move from Richardson. If you read my statement from above in why I agree. With your type of mentality, is the reason why a number of Black men find it difficult to find work because of this attitude of "If he can do it, I can do it too." Sounds like Monkey See - Monkey Doo mentality.

    Cam is pure, honorable, strong. Jermey is Trash, never forget that."

    Playing devils advocate, most racist when they have said something and done the opposite in the past generally won't tell you in your face they are racist they typically employ some excuse to detract from their ulterior motives. In the above, he could have detracted from his racial bias by stating his reasons are Cam being the future of the org. This gives others the viewpt that his reasons are valid since they explain his duplicitous past actions.

  • Ed - 8 years ago

    The 'boss' can tell you what the requirements are for your job. If you want to follow the 'boss's' directions, no problem! If you don't want to follow the 'boss's' directions, find another job ... still, no problem ! When you are the 'boss', you can make or not make the requirements.

  • BR - 8 years ago

    I can't believe anyone on here thinks that it's okay for any employer to tell you what you can and cannot do with your own body!! I don't care if they're being paid $50M a season, they're EMPLOYEES, not property.

    NOW, I would agree that an owner could stipulate a dress code. These men are highly paid professionals and should dress accordingly - just like we do in most corporate offices. That means a suit and tie, especially on game days - NO WARM-UPS.

    Most offices do have a policy regarding visible tattoos and piercings, especially when we're talking about nose, lip, or other 'uncommon' readily visible piercings (gauged out ear lobes aren't a smart idea for a football player). Mostly, they're for safety but in certain roles they are for appearance and presenting a corporate image. In this case, I would limit tattoos to places that can be covered up while at work. But as a football player, it's not like a tattoo is going to throw off the corporate image. They're football players, not desk jockeys.

  • Mary - 8 years ago

    It is a "dress code," most employers have them.

  • rod - 8 years ago

    Hector that is not inconsistency that is discrimination and even in the real world that is not allowed. You cannot single one person out.

  • gullyjuice - 8 years ago

    Doctora Stated: "The owner action is questionable when he is asking or better yet telling the black quarterback not to have tattoos and piercings but turns around a hires Jeremy Shockey, one of the most controversial hot headed, tattooed player in the league. Shockey, at one point was a cleaned cut Jimmy Clausen looking dude (white), who so happened to have been arrested for drunkenness and fighting on multiple occasions (before and after the tats by the way).

    The owner comes off as a hypocrite at best and unfortunately a racist at worst."

    You may have a valid argument. Cam Newton and Jeremy Shockey are two different complete players. Shockey is a nobody in my opinion. Cam is the Future. Shockey does not sell tickets, Cam does. This is NOT a RACIAL move, but a smart, honorable, strategic move from Richardson. If you read my statement from above in why I agree. With your type of mentality, is the reason why a number of Black men find it difficult to find work because of this attitude of "If he can do it, I can do it too." Sounds like Monkey See - Monkey Doo mentality.

    Cam is pure, honorable, strong. Jermey is Trash, never forget that.

  • Steve - 8 years ago

    I think that all sports players should be forced to at least have a clause in the contract that they be neat and clean in appearance. At one time all male college athletes traveled in suits or at least a shirt and tie. Same for the pros. This is something that should be brought back. Tattoos and piercings should be hidden and not seen while wearing the uniform or in travel clothes. Hair should be clean (washed regularly) and neatly cut. Facial hair should be the same.

  • Doctora - 8 years ago

    To Micheal

    I don't have a chip on my shoulder maybe you do because you can't face reality and like to distort the truth. You do know how to read don’t you?

    A wait a minute...Rush “basehead” Limbaugh is that you or is it Glenn “fake teases” Beck?

    “Do nothing that would potentially alienate the mainstream paying customers" are code words from a coward that is afraid to say what's really on his mind. My point is that he would not have asked that question of Cam if he was white and that TALENT supersede race!

  • Hector - 8 years ago

    Employer has the right to determine dress code ad piercing and tatoos is part of a dress code. The problem here is consistency. Why demand on someone not to have them when 90% of the ones you employed have them.

  • Nicole - 8 years ago

    If they're providing a beyond substantial salary, they have the right to prohibit tattoo's. Its not like he'll be playing forever, he can get them later on if he really wants them.

  • TominNH - 8 years ago

    Owner is high profile businesses have the right to decide how their employees present themselves to the public. There are companies that dont allow their employees to smoke... at any time!

  • rod - 8 years ago

    I disagree. The problem here is you can't discriminate and ask one person and allow it for the remaining team, be it your best player or most publicize player. As someone earlier mentioned unless it is in the teams rules that all shall comply then absolutely not. I would not want to the boss requesting me i can't do something while everyone around me can.

  • howe - 8 years ago

    When an employer signs someone to a sports contract that includes indorsements and most do, I think the team owner has a right to decide what kind of image they want their employees to project, because the owners understand what the markets demand of them and make the risks associated with marketing a team or a product. This is not about freedom of speech, its about enteprenuership and if the employee signs the contract they give up certain rights to the employer. The notion that some rights are unalienable and cannot be waivered because they are unreasonable or harmful to the employee only exist if neither party wants to engage in a contract for mutual profit. Although the employee can break contract at any time to enjoy the constitutional rights, it does carry with it the consequence of possibly being unemployed. Unlike some kinds of employment, the military, several federal agencies and sports figures all fall under the 24/7 umbrella for what behavior is acceptable and unacceptable and in the case of the military, a person can be sent to federal prison for violations.

  • Chooh76 - 8 years ago

    It's football, not accounting. Team standard already allows tattoos and piercings so Richardson has no leverage. I suppose he should also point his finger at heaven and give credit to Jesus every time he scores a touchdown?

  • Antoine - 8 years ago

    Did Cam really have an option to go elsewhere? In a draft, you go where you are picked (with some very highly publicized but limited historical exceptions). That said, I don't think you can honestly say he had a choice. This is unAmerican. I don't like tattoos or piercings. But I don't want my freedoms being trampled on because you want to appease a few closed minded folks. You can try and compare corportate office to the gridiron if you want, but it doesn't hold water. Your image in sports is your success. Gauranteed, if you put up insane numbers, you can have just about any tattoo on your body and fans would care less. It is only when you flop that your tattoos become an issue. This is just some rich guy trying to control another's actions 24/7.

  • Doctora - 8 years ago

    To Daniel G:

    You are asserting that only people with tattoos or piercings or only black people are “rowdy and start fights or shoot people and don’t support a family environment" and that's asinine.

    I know of and seen plenty of clean cut Jimmy Clausen looking dudes that have acted rowdy, started fights or shot someone. They clearly didn’t support or create a family environment.

    The owner action is questionable when he is asking or better yet telling the black quarterback not to have tattoos and piercings but turns around a hires Jeremy Shockey, one of the most controversial hot headed, tattooed player in the league. Shockey, at one point was a cleaned cut Jimmy Clausen looking dude (white), who so happened to have been arrested for drunkenness and fighting on multiple occasions (before and after the tats by the way).

    The owner comes off as a hypocrite at best and unfortunately a racist at worst.

  • gullyjuiceradio - 8 years ago

    I have to agree with Richardson. Cam Newton like it or not is the FACE of Carolina Panther. If he plays well and sets records and possible super bowl, he will be the FACE of the NFL. It's time for people to "GROW UP." Tattoos were designed to MARK a person of their organization or affiliaton, i.e. Gangs, Criminal Organizations, Clans, Special Forces, other alleigence to hiearchy. 50 Cent had to remove all of this tattoos in order to get million dollar acting roles. So in all, Tattoos and piercings are for people who ran out of ways to express themselves, unless that comes with the job.

  • bob Berbowski - 8 years ago

    Cam Newton is actually a rebel, how many other young athelets dress nicely, have no tats, and speak clearly. The people with tattoos and piercings are now the followers. "Being yourself" doesn't mean just following the latest trend.

    Also, it used to be you would only see arm and neck tattos because the rest of the persons body was already covered. Now peole have to get a high-visibility one where they can show off how bad-ass they are.

    Look at me! Look at Me! pleeeeeeeeeease look at me!
    (same idiots who like loud pipes on their harley- attention whores, all of them. Trying so hard to be "cool")

  • Stingray Jetson - 8 years ago

    If Cam reads this: "Cam, don't get any tattos or piercings...Why not? you ask. Simple. You are a brand, an Icon, Don't not get them for the owner, do it for yourself to be clean, slick, smooth and flawless, just like your athleticism is. CAN"T WAIT, until you exceed every record known in the quarterback position, watch out Brett Favre.

  • kt - 8 years ago

    You pay the players multi-millions of dollars to be the rulers of the football field, beat down their opponents, and make a billion dollars for the NFL. But these modern-day gladiators are still being treated like children by management --- in 2011, telling a grown man not to get a tattoo or piercing is absolutely ludicrous! What do the owners think they are actually controlling? Piercings and tattoos don't make you a criminal, drug addict, or good/bad person -- your ACTIONS do.

  • luke - 8 years ago

    Employees, Officers in the military, Managers, presidents, CEOs etc etc... a lot of these people have to abide by tattoo and ear piercing rules. This is not an unreasonable thing to ask...

  • bob berbowski - 8 years ago

    You are absolutely free to get as many tattoos and piercings you want, an you can go work at Hot Topic. You're not gonna be a CNN anchor or President with a Mike Tyson face tattoo.
    Make your choice and deal with the consequences of your decision.

  • hjack924 - 8 years ago

    The man who pays the band tells the band what to play.

    How refreshing to see decent hair with no cacophony of stupid tattoos.

  • michael - 8 years ago

    While I voted no[its the lawless rebel in me], I was pleasantly surprised to see the majority voted yes. "He's not a CEO: he shouldn't have to..." He's going to make more in a year than any CEO you can name, and none of them go to board meetings in a tat-flashin' tank top. "...alienating white people because you are a black quarterback". McNabb, Vick, Dixon...anyone feeling alienated yet? For someone who thinks so highly of himself, doctora, you sure have a chip on your shoulder. Wait a minute...Al Sharpton, is that you?

    If the team wants to portray a clean-cut image[Shockey? Ha!] and Cam fits the bill and is good with it, the rest of ya'll should shut up.

  • Brian - 8 years ago

    I do not see anything wrong with an owner trying to present a positive image for his organization. Look at the Yankees - no long hair, no excessive facial hair. Their image means we are professionals, we play professionally. And the results are there. I believe it is proven that people feel better about themselves when they think they look sharp.

  • Jeff - 8 years ago

    My first, gut, reaction was "no effin' WAY!"... I'm a big believer in personal freedoms and consider infringements on them to be appalling.

    On reflection, however, I realized that Cam was essentially agreeing to a condition for employment. Very, VERY well-compensated, high-profile employment. I do feel that employers have rights too, and to make some rules about appearance seems fair enough.

    I don't have any ink but I do have a pierced ear. I don't really use the piercing much anymore; I'm just a middle-aged dork, and things like ponytails and ear rings are a bad, bad look for that category of human IMHO. But if I was interviewing for a $120k/yr job that included lots of "face time" with the public, representing the company, and they specified no ear ring... I'd not give it a second thought.

    Now, drug testing people in jobs where off-the-clock use isn't relevant to the job- THAT annoys me.

  • Brandon - 8 years ago

    The Yankees have had strict appearance limits forever. If the organization says something that's the way it is if you sign a contract then you abide by it. No one makes him play professionally. I don't personally see any problems with with tattoos or piercings but if for some crazy reason the Panthers are trying to do something with the organization then more power to them. The only problem is how do you go about punishing someone that violates the rules? FA know what they are getting themselves into when they join the Yankees but getting drafted into the Panthers and having a union its not like you can suspend them without pay.

  • Daniel G - 8 years ago

    Unless people playing the race card can look at Jimmy Clausen. He could have been the face of the franchise and look how clean cut he his. It is not a race issue, but he wants a family environment. Yes wins get people in the seats, but he wants families in the seats, not people that are going to be rowdy and start fights or shoot people. Ultimately Cam chose to be selected and sign with the Panthers. He could have easily not gone to Carolina if he cared so why does everyone else?

  • Errol Anthony Wilks - 8 years ago

    At last an owner with balls! Tattoos are unsanitary and stupid. You would think a worldclass athlete would know better. I don't even date chicks with tattoos. I applaud the owner for setting an example.

  • Dylan - 8 years ago

    There is a certain culture/behavior that tends to go with tatoos and piercings when mixed with professional sports. If a corporation wants to portay a certain image, those who are involved in portraying that image should align themselves with that image, especially when they are being paid millions of dollars to do so. Most companies have some sort of dress code by which employees abide. While some may consider plastering the body with all kinds of tatoos and piercings, the ones who cut the paycheck may not agree, just like they may not agree that walking around with one's butt crack showing is art. The employer should have the right to demand a certain standard of appearance. If the employee doesn't like it, too bad. It's the employers rperogative.

  • cap'n sticky - 8 years ago

    If it can be shown that piercings cause any amount of absenteeism or medical costs due to infections, then any employer has the right to forbid the practice of self-mutilation. It should be up-front, in the job description, interviews, contracts, and written policies. If it is a policy change, the previous employees could be grandfathered, since it was not a condition of employment when they hired-in. For piercings hidden by clothing - don't ask/don't tell.

  • Doctora - 8 years ago

    Would this be an issue if Cam wasn't black?

    I'm not buying the owner's reasoning, “Do nothing that would potentially alienate the mainstream paying customers.” Those are code words for not alienating white people because you are a black quarterback.

    Newsflash to the owner – as long as your team wins lots of games, it does not matter if the player has tattoos or piercings. Its’ all about talent!

    Just because someone hires you, regardless of salary, does not means that person or organization owns you. If Cam was smart or had any pride, he should have walked out of that meeting. It’s 2011 no one should have to put up with that crap!

  • K. Wagoner - 8 years ago

    The problem in the States now is that too many individuals are abusing our "freedom". Employers have a right to enforce a dress/appearance code that it in alignment with the image their business is trying to project. I am well aware that this stance ruffles the feathers of people for religious/personal/racial reasons, but a line has to be drawn somewhere. If body art is more important to you than a certain paying job that doesn't condone them, then move on to a company that does.

  • satanlovesvulva - 8 years ago

    Cam Newton is looking for employment and if he wants to be hired by this or that company, this or that company have a right to set rules and regulations for their employees who will be earning gazillions of dollars. Cam Newton does not need to take that job if he feels that the rules and regulations are too harsh. His got 3 choices: A)take the job along with the gazillions of dollars, B)don't take the job and get as many tattoos and body piercings as he wants, C)find another company that is willing to give him gazillions of dollars no matter what type of ink or earrings, nipple rings, nose rings, cock rings that he wants. Those are his 3 choices. One more choice, D)don't work for any of those companies and don't get paid gazillions of dollars. It's his choice. satan needs to eat vulva now. ciao

  • Joe - 8 years ago

    Everyone keeps saying they're paying you, if you don't like it go work somewhere else, well they aren't the only team in the NFL. Though I agree with the fact of saying we want you to be the face of the franchise and we'd like you to portray a certain image, but have you ever seen your Lawyer or Accountant without a suite? They probably have tattoos hiding under there, so saying they CANNOT do something that you probably wouldn't even notice if their uniform covers it is just plain dumb.

  • Michael - 8 years ago

    If an athlete doesn't want to get a haircut, or if he/she wants tattoos, body piercings, or whatever, he/she can always not accept millions of dollars to go out a play a sport. Just go get a real job, and skip the riches. A professional sports team is a business, and if the owner of that business wants to project a certain image to his customers (the fans), then he has the right to do so by requiring a certain standard of appearance. This is no different than in any other business.

  • MeeToo - 8 years ago

    For those of you who don't think it is fair for a company to tell you what to do, or not do with your body:

    Fine. They don't have to give you employment either! So take your mistakes in life and go work at the local gas station. I'm sure they'll receive you with open arms.

  • Clay - 8 years ago

    There is no law that I know of that says an owner cannot have a dress/personal appearance code for his employees. I am part of the 52% who think it is OK for the owner to tell his employees they cannot get a tattoo. If a player disagrees with this he can find another job. I understand he cannot just go to another team but there is nothing that requires him to play professional football. Play professional sports is a privilege not a right.

  • owentheswede - 8 years ago

    It's definitely Richardon's prerogative to decide dress code, etc. He's breaking no rules or laws here. But it's not so much disallowing tattoos and piercings as much as the apparent selective application of this philosophy that I don't much care for. We'll bring in Shockey with his crazy tats, just to name the most obvious player, but that's different. I NEVER play the race card but I can't help but wonder if he would have asked the same questions of a white QB. Just sayin'.

  • birdwoman - 8 years ago

    Business' have dress codes and to me this is the same thing.

  • Yellowdog - 8 years ago

    He has NO right to tell him not to get a tatto or peirced. He can say 'you will not wear an earring while you working.' Fine. Once he leaves work, he can wear what he wants. If the owner doesn't like it, release him from his contract. If not STFU.

  • cookie - 8 years ago

    It's amazing the Bible was written over two thousand years ago and it states clearly "Not to tattoo any marks on your body" (Leviticus 19:28) God knew the future that's occurring as we speak.

    It's time someone took a stand and set some ground rules regarding those stupid tattoos. People who once had beautiful bodies are now looking like painted monkeys. There are warnings of record numbers of tainted blood in people due to the paint used for tattoos but that has not stopped the madness. Instead, the madness has gotten worse and people are still flocking to the tattoo station to get their bodies painted like a ghetto billboard.

    It merely shows an ignorant in America !
    Someone has to take a stand.

  • missingthepoint - 8 years ago

    i think some people are overlooking the MOST important point. other players who were signed at the time of Cam Newton were not required to, or given such ultimatums. an employer can tell you to abide by their dress code and maintain a certain appearance when employed. HOWEVER it needs to be adhered to by everyone and it needs to be applied consistently. if it's not guess what that's called? which lawyer wouldn't have a field day with this?

    in this case it's not. so LEGALLY cam doesn't have to abide. the fact that the owner so bold faced-ly told Cam not to get tats/piercings while not conveying that same message to other players is more than a bit odd...it seems like he's opening the door to some legal issues if cam newton so chooses to explore that avenue. being paid millions of dollars is irrelevant....it's what the job is worth. if the owner is trying to clean up the image of the team there are lots of players that fit his requirements yet he has not acquired them. and let's be realistic...you're using ONE player out of 30+ players to project the teams' image? seems like another example of the short sightedness of management...

  • Mike Rodot - 8 years ago

    How would Jerry feel if Cam showed up with a tastefully done Carolina Panthers logo on his shoulder?

    As an American, I believe in individual freedom. I also believe that to enjoy that freedom one should exhibit integrity, responsibility, character and respect for the society in which we all live. If one exhibits those traits, what matter if he/she is tatted and /or pierced. I would only hope that such would be tastefully done.

  • Daniel G - 8 years ago

    @Caleb, there is no reason to believe this is a racial issue, so unless you can come up with a white QB the Panthers drafted high and said could get tattoos and piercings then it is a non issue.

    In terms if it is ok or not, it absolutely is ok to do this. There is no law preventing an employer from discriminating based on tattoos and piercings, and their shouldn’t be, so why should he not be allowed to tell him not to get any. It is not like he hid it from him and told him after he signed a contract, he knew what he was walking into and could have said don’t draft me then because I’m not what your looking for.

  • JJMurray - 8 years ago

    These players represent their team on and off the field. Just like in any other business you want your employees to put forth the best face. While I don't agree that teams have the right to stop someone from getting a tattoo or piercing, I have no problem with them encouraging players NOT to do so. Similarly, if down the road they have two players of equal caliber and one is all "tatted up" and the other isn't, I don't have a problem with the team using that as a deciding factor.

  • jimbo749974 - 8 years ago

    For those who live by the Book, Leviticus 19:28 has been a guide and a cultural norm for generations. I feel a silent sense of pity every time I see an otherwise attractive countenance defaced by a pierced nose , eyebrow or lip. Tattoos fade and become ugly with time. Many a tatoo becomes regrettable, and then comes the discovery that tattoo removal is not fun. I give thanks for a country where we are free to be leaders or followers. We are free to use our brains or to be fools.

  • Chris - 8 years ago

    I worked for a company that would not hire people who were not well groomed. Appearance is key for many organizations. The franchise owner is paying him millions of dollars. While I am certain Newton will get a tattoo and a piercing to show who is in control, the owner has the right to trade him too. I would put it in his contract.

  • John - 8 years ago

    Tattoos and piercings are a personal choice, albeit a stupid one in my opinion. So it is OK with me if you want to cover yourself with those things. However, when I watch an athletic event and see these guys and gals covered with tattoos the thought that comes to my mind is not how "cool" they look, but how ridiculous they look. I imagine them at say 60 or 70 years old kicking themselves square in the ass for making such a dumb decision in their youth. Since I am an older guy my only regret is I won't be around to see how goofy they will look when they are older.

    My real favorite is the football players with their hair flowing out of their helmets half way down the back of their jerseys. I have nothing against long hair and wore mine longer in my youth. But, does it make any sense to wear your hair that way when it can be used by your opponents to potentially injure you?

    I don't know the rule on tackling a guy by his hair, but whenever I watch one of the long haired guys running with the ball, all I can think of is the defender grabbing him by the hair and yanking him down to the ground. I do not wish for anyone to get hurt but the sight of a guy getting tackled that way and doing a back flip as he goes down would be hilarious.

    I suspect that this would be against the rules and probably would result in a pretty stiff fine, but if one guy got a broken neck being tackled that way I bet you wouldn't see anymore hair sticking out of any of their helmets by the next weeks games.

  • caleb - 8 years ago

    Sounds kind of racial i hate to say, if he didnt tell shokey that why would it change with cam, the crap about face of franchise is bull.

  • ebape2 - 8 years ago

    Players are paid to do a job, how they choose to wear their hair or get a tattoo is their personal preference. It's like telling them they can only wear a certain color shirt or certain jeans. A player should be able to express himself in that manner if he so chooses.

  • Clemob74 - 8 years ago

    I have no problem with him not allowing Cam to have tatoos or piercings. The problem is if you prohibit one player in that way, you must prohibit all players equally. If Cam can't have tatoos or piercings, no other player should be allowed to have them, either. Spread your rules evenly across the board. Don't pick and choose who can or cannot do something.

  • Eugene - 8 years ago

    You work for a company, you accept a paycheck, a dress code can come with that package. You don't like it, you can quit. For the comment that you can't make that position specific, sure you can. We do impose the same dress standards on employees in our warehouse that have no customer contact as we do with customer service reps. The closer your image is tied to the company's image, the more license there is to enforce a standard.

  • JSCOACH2001 - 8 years ago

    When you work for someone you represent them.
    As long as the owners are upfront with the players about expectations then there should be no issue. Both parties can walk away if they do not agree so what is the problem? I would love for my kids to be able to look up to a clean cut pro athlete.

  • mater - 8 years ago

    Everyone has the inalienable right to look stupid!

  • Jean - 8 years ago

    If Diane Sawyer showed up with a nose ring, or Al Roker appeared with a tattoo on his forehead, they would be off the air. Sports entertainers are still ENTERTAINERS, and as such, it is generally held that their appearance contributes to their overall value. I see no reason for a prospective employer to say that body art that SHOWS can be restricted. If you hire someone with body art, fine, but if you hire someone who does not have visible tats or piercings, you should be able to say that it must stay that way during the length of the contract. Lol, for all we know Diane Sawyer has an eagle tattooed on her back and Al Roker has nipple piercings. They just do not show. (wink)

  • Alaskapepper - 8 years ago

    Lombardi? You bet. Professionalism is more than a show. Some people are happy in their own skin. Some prefer to ink it up. While it is a personal choice, and indeed some of the best athletes in the world wear ink, it is my opinion that once a person travels down the "ink road" they loose a part of themselves. That part may make the difference in attitude when its 4th and goal from the 15 and behind 4 points. Or being down 2 points mid court .5 from the buzzer. In the end, it is a personal choice, and so is attitude.

  • Kebo72 - 8 years ago

    It's not the question of whether they can tell them yes or no, it's the consistency. If they tell all players no you can't do this or that, then that is fine. Otherwise, it's discriminating.

  • todd walker - 8 years ago

    Im a huge Panther fan since the begginning here in CLT............I however am old school and like to see players and people for that matter with no body markings, however this is just another in a long lifetime of arrogant moves by Jerry Richardson. He thinks highly of himself and expects others around him to think of him that way also. Huge jerk in my opinion and Ive been around him in person a few times in a one on one and a group setting. Imagine thinking you could tell a player or anyone they couldnt do as they please.............he tried the same thing on Julius Peppers but to a much higher degree and he did so in public embarrassing him, I would have wanted to leave too if I were Peppers.

  • Irene - 8 years ago

    Let the guy's talent speak for itself. Nice to see a clean appearance and someone with enough confidence and self esteem they didn't need to alter their appearance - for themselves or to impress ...something?...on others. Yes, I'm a woman and no, I don't have my ears, belly button or any other thing pierced or inked or fake boobs. I know they weren't perfect, but I miss watching football with my parents and grandparents every Sunday growing up in the late 70s, early 80s. I've shied away from it since then. Now that I have a 2 yr old son, I can only hope the Cleveland Browns try to emulate what Mr. Richardson is doing.

  • Heritagepoo - 8 years ago

    quote: 'Jason - 28 minutes ago
    But what about the players who heritage is to have tattoos and piercings?"
    dear jason, you know what you can do with your heritage don't you?

  • Bugger - 8 years ago

    Evidently most of you have never worked for large company with rules for employees, even how they look. It's called "Code of Business Conduct" and you have to read it every year and sign it that you agree with the rules. These rules are a condition of employment. They cover things like how you looks on the job. You agree to them before day one on the job so you have no complaint when you're fired. In this case he doesn't want his quarterback looking like a thug.

  • barb - 8 years ago

    Finally, someone in major league sports is invoking some discipline (a la Tom Landry). When an employer is paying someone this kind of money and says, "Jump", he should say, "How high?". Way to go!!

  • NFLDaddy - 8 years ago

    Listen, if you think that an employer does NOT have the right to tell their employees to not be pierced or tatted, then you've never held a real job. Keep flippin' burgers at Wendy's.

  • maxwello - 8 years ago

    What part of being a professional football player is NOT about meeting physical requirements of one form or another? Height, weight, stamina, let alone ingesting alcohol or narcotics. Of the requirements teams have for players, this at least seems like a fairly easy one to maintain. No visible tattoos covers a much larger percentage of skin given an athlete's wardrobe. I think of it as a second contract rolled into the first that his teammates weren't offered. Contract one is for an athlete for playing the game. Contract two is for as a professional model being hired as the face of the team. No one would argue with a company that said they didn't want a model with extensive piercings and tattoos representing their company as a spokesmodel, if that didn't fit the image they were trying to develop among their customers. This is the same thing. He's being compensated based on both roles.

  • Tony - 8 years ago

    Do you see any Yankees with facial hair? What if a player decides that he is expressing himself by wearing the away jersey at a home game?
    It's ridiculous to think that this could even be questioned. Owners write the checks. Owners make those rules. If the players don't want to abide by them they can go play for a different team.
    Beyond that, there is an inherent double standard that is coming to light here. A completely reasonable, understandable and justifiable double standard. QB's are different. QB's are expected to behave in different ways than other players. And QB's are the representative face of the franchise. That means they stay out of trouble, the smile for the cameras, they kiss the babies and generally refrain from doing anything that could be polarizing. You wanna get all tatted out and put 12 gauge spacers in your ears? Congratulations, you're now a running back.

    Don't get me wrong, my favorite player- Clay Matthews. Even Aaron Rodgers got a haircut once he became the man.

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