Originally written on Wrestlechat.net  |  Last updated 11/17/14

WWE Champion CM Punk spoke with AZCentral.com this week to promote next week’s RAW Supershow in Phoenix.

Here are some highlights:

Q: Are American fans not respectful? (After commenting that Japan has respectful fans.)

A: It’s just a lack of “excuse me” and “please” and “thank you.” I’m a pretty approachable guy, but I’ve had my headphones taken off my head in the gym, people poking me in the back like I’m a farm animal. It’s a part of the game.

Q: With so many young fans, you must find yourself being a role model.

A: Absolutely. I’m the straight-edge guy. I’m a damn good guy to look up to. But I approach it the way Charles Barkley approached it. I’m not a role model. Everybody should choose their own path in life. I don’t get preachy with the straight-edge stuff.

Q: Do people put you on a pedestal because of it?

A: I find myself being a target as opposed to being put on a pedestal. I get criticized a lot. There are people who are skeptical about it or scared by it or intimidated by it.

Q: Do you mind that a personal choice like that has become part of your public persona?

A: No, because it’s who I am. People say, “When did you decide to be straight edge?” I was born this way. It’s nothing I really decided (pause) and, right now, while I’m talking, on the treadmill and doing an interview, there’s a guy standing over here, taking pictures … (He politely asks the guy to stop, which doesn’t seem to go well). All right, and now he just flipped me off, and I’m the (expletive). See what I mean? (sighing) … Anyway, I don’t think I have a persona per se. I’m not trying to be something I’m not.

Q: What about acting? So many WWE people go into the movies.

A: That’s not up to me, but it’s nothing I’m actively pursuing. I never say never to anything, but it’s nothing I’m looking to actively do.

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