Originally written on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 5/28/13
The same-sex marriage debate has raged with intensity in the United States recently, and that shouldn't be expected to change any time soon with the U.S. Supreme Court still in the process of putting together a ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act.  And so it's in no way surprising that when, on a quiet long weekend in May, one of the NFL's biggest stars decides to share his opinion on said debate, headlines are made. Turns out Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson isn't "with" gay marriage. He revealed that non-sports tidbit on Sirius/XM NFL Radio last week, but this "controversy" wasn't sparked until the comments began to gain some serious traction this weekend.  The truth is, whether I'm for or against gay marriage, I don't care what Adrian Peterson thinks. And you shouldn't either. I don't always see eye-to-eye with Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio, but he hit the nail on the head with his take on Peterson's comments: When Peterson says in a radio interview that he’s “not with” same-sex marriage, he exercises his right to say whatever he wants.  And those who choose to disagree with Peterson are exercising the same rights.  Meanwhile, those who are fighting for and against the legalization of same-sex marriage are exercise their rights to participate in the political process. Peterson is an American citizen speaking freely. Wonderful. But he's not a politician or an authority figure and his words shouldn't be influential. This goes back to the general notion that athletes should not be considered role models. In fact, you'd be best to stay away from all types of celebrities when trying to decide where you land on major social and political issues. They might be special, but their opinions on topics not related to their profession are not.
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