Obama would not let his son play football
January 19th, 2014
03:20 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama would not let his son play football

Washington (CNN) - As the Patriots, Broncos, Seahawks and 49ers prepare to battle for two spots in the Super Bowl, President Barack Obama says if he had a son, he wouldn’t let him play pro football.

With an ever-growing amount of evidence linking the brutal sport with serious head and brain trauma, the President, who has two daughters, told New Yorker editor David Remnick he would bar his son from playing the sport.


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"I would not let my son play pro football," Obama reportedly said.

In the wide-ranging interview, covering a range of subjects about his presidency - from the controversy over the National Security Agency's bulk collection of metadata from American citizens, to the potential legalization of marijuana - Obama said the athletes who play pro football know the risk of injury is part of the bargain. But it's a risk he would not take with his son's future.

"There's a little bit of caveat emptor," Obama told Remnick. "These guys, they know what they're doing. They know what they're buying into. It is no longer a secret. It's sort of the feeling I have about smokers, you know?" he added.

Obama is an avid sports fan and self-professed "SportsCenter" addict who roots for the Chicago Bears. But he said football has entered the same "realm" as boxing, another sport plagued by seeing its stars suffer through the afterlife of their careers beset by crippling injuries related to the punishment they took in the ring.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. Name fannie

    If president obama had a son he would look like trayvon martin

    January 19, 2014 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  2. Don

    But he would let him smoke pot, right?

    FBO

    January 19, 2014 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  3. ja

    Football is just an evolution of gladiators,

    January 19, 2014 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  4. russ

    maybe we should stop any activity where some one might get hurt and wrap everyone in bubble wrap. There is no difference between a football player and a man who works in a steel mill for living. both are paid for their time and wear and tear on there body. what are we teaching our kids, don't try things or you might get hurt always play it safe and stay on the sidelines. what has happened to the American spirit

    January 19, 2014 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  5. Sokesky

    You can't keep adults from doing what they want to do; however, I would strongly discourage any kid of mine from playing pro football to the best of my ability. The shortened life span and the injuries aren't worth the money.

    January 19, 2014 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  6. harry

    I got out of a coma last week and started reading the news. Crazy how small computers have gotten these days. Who is this Obama person? Preseident carter woykd be so embarrased of people like this woman

    January 19, 2014 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  7. S~

    Who cares what Obama says?

    January 19, 2014 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  8. john

    The president is right on this one. This is not a real sport. It's more like a rolling version of the WWF but the injuries are real. The American public is catching on. Pop Warner participation is off by 20%. As the public becomes even more aware of this problem, that rate will accelerate. The NFL is heading down the same road as boxing and the tobacco industry.

    January 19, 2014 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  9. TransitDave

    One would certainly expect that, If Obama had a son old enough and talented enough to play pro-football, the son would decide for himself. Or is Obama's messiah complex speaking again?

    January 19, 2014 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  10. DC603

    "Wouldn't let' his son play pro football? How exactly would he prevent a son from playing pro football, considering when you play pro, you're a legal adult that can make your own decisions?

    Or, he could have just said that if he had a son, he'd be concerned about them getting involved in football as a child due to the risk of injury?

    January 19, 2014 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  11. Joe G.

    I wouldn't let my son play football at any level unless he has great desire and if he has greater athletic ability than the other kids in the school. The last thing I would want is my beloved to be crippled, addictive to steroids, or even dumb as a box of rocks by wasting time and energy to something which would bare no fruits.

    January 19, 2014 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  12. Name carion

    I agree with the president

    January 19, 2014 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  13. Wes

    My imaginary daughter is a brain surgeon.

    January 19, 2014 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  14. shadowscry2

    Of course he would not let his "son" ply pro ball. Neither would law enforcement. All of Obama's sons are criminals.

    January 19, 2014 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  15. Nicole

    Obama's daughter's must really hate their imaginary brother by now.

    January 19, 2014 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  16. Willllburrrr

    G_Edwards: "Of course not. They use their potential and skills to become independent. It seems Pres Obama's desire is to have people become dependent on others and the government."

    That's just ignorant. So you don't have the ability to recommend to your son to avoid pro football? You just love diving in making everything political and expressing your hatred for a president who has worked rings around W. He never said be a welfare bum... something you think everyone on the left is. He said avoid the job with a high possibility of debilitating injury to plague you later in life. Nothing wrong with giving your kid helpful life tips. Much better than teaching them to be an ignorant racist.

    January 19, 2014 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  17. James

    LMAO.. The argument goes well above most of the tea bag heads in this comment section.

    January 19, 2014 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  18. Bryan

    Does he still think people care about or believe what he says?

    January 19, 2014 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  19. langor1

    I'm beginning to think Obama actually has an illegitimate son somewhere.

    January 19, 2014 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  20. turtlegirl 72

    I won't allow my son to play football for the exact same reason. There are plenty of options for kids to choose from in athletics which don't come with the same risk.

    January 19, 2014 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  21. Jacob

    To play pro football you have to be over 18. So the President is saying he wouldn't let his adult son play pro football? What else wouldn't he "let" his adult son do? Classic extreme left-wing nanny state thinking.

    January 19, 2014 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  22. Bob

    Football's future is shaky.

    January 19, 2014 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  23. Bryan

    Does he think people still care what he says? He is probably lying anyway

    January 19, 2014 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  24. Kenman

    Good grief, one of the few days we haven't seen his mug all over tv and this pathetic network can't go without finding any reason to put him or Michelle on their website! Pathetic!

    January 19, 2014 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  25. desiderada

    Donald Trump says people who aren't born don't get to decide what their sons don't play. If they had sons. If they were born.

    January 19, 2014 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
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