The George Zimmerman verdict has sparked an intense reaction from athletes, mostly in disbelief that Zimmerman was allowed to walk away freely from the courtroom. We at Giants 101 are not here to give our opinions on the case, but regardless, the loss of a human life in nearly any capacity is a tragedy in and of itself.
"Thoroughly confused," Cruz tweeted following the verdict. "Zimmerman doesn't last a year before the hood catches up to him."
Cruz has done a lot of great things throughout his career, both on and off the football field. This is the same guy who following the Sandy Hook tragedy visited the family of victim Jack Pinto. Cruz has also been an active force for good in the Paterson, NJ. neighborhood he grew up in and has served as a role model for underprivileged children.
Cruz is not a bad person. But his tweet following the George Zimmerman case went well beyond the point of anger of frustration. It gave publicity to the notion that Zimmerman should die for his actions, a consequence that not even the prosecution team was pursuing.
On Sunday afternoon, Cruz issued an apology for his tweet.
“My tweet last night was my initial interpretation of the reaction I was reading on twitter,” Cruz wrote. ”I immediately realized my tweet was a mistake and I apologize, that’s why I deleted it. I believe conversation not confrontation leads to change and progress. I never have and never will advocate violence under any circumstances and I pray that we all encourage and educate each other. The death of Trayvon Martin is an unthinkable tragedy that is any parent’s worst nightmare. As a father, I want my daughter to grow up in a country that uses this tragedy to heal and grow and progress. My prayers continue to go out to Trayvon Martin’s family.”
At the end of the day, Victor Cruz is a great football player who keeps himself out of legal trouble, which is a significant feat in today's NFL. His opinions on non-football related issues are none of our business, unless he decides to publicize them to the world as he did immediately following the verdict. He's apologized, the sports world will move on and fans will forget about these comments long before No. 80 is salsa dancing in the end zone at MetLife Stadium this season.
But that doesn't make what Cruz said acceptable, and the Giants should, and probably already have, privately reprimanded Cruz for making such an outrageous and mortifying statement.
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