Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo has made two All-Pro teams and survived 10 seasons in the NFL, primarily because of his special-teams ability. He's very active in political issues, including the support of same-sex marriage.
According to one Baltimore County politician, Ayanbadejo is too active. Maryland House of Delegates member Emmett C. Burns Jr. sent a letter to Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti, asking for the team to curb Ayanbadejo's support of the issue. Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports (via the Big Lead) obtained the letter.
Get ready for this one:
"I find it inconceivable that one of your players, Mr. Brendon Ayanbadejo would publicly endorse Same-Sex marriage, specifically as a Raven Football player. Many of my constituents and your football supporters are appalled and aghast that a member of the Ravens Football Team would step into this controversial divide and try to sway public opinion one way or the other.
"Many of your fans are opposed to such a view and feel it has no place in a sport that is strictly for pride, entertainment and excitement.," Burns wrote. "I believe Mr. Ayanbadejo should concentrate on football and steer clear of dividing the fan base.
"I am requesting that you take the necessary action, as a National Football League Owner, to inhibit such expressions from your employees and that he be ordered to cease and desist such injurious actions. I know of no other NFL player who has done what Mr. Ayanbadejo is doing."
Without even considering what political side of the fence you are on this issue, Burns' letter comes across as a cynical, short-sighted plea for attention. It is truly bizarre to think that he'd ask the Ravens to stifle Ayanbadejo's political activities.
This whole story leaves us a little speechless. We'll let Ayanbadejo's perfect response speak for us.
Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.
Football is just my job it's not who I am. I am an American before anything. And just like every American I have the right to speak!!!â Brendon Ayanbadejo (@brendon310) September 5, 2012