Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is backtracking from comments Tuesday in which he compared football players to our nation's troops.
"I made a poor analogy, by saying that the psychological adjustments they have to make from their contests to normal society were not unlike the difficulties experienced by returning veterans," Dayton said in a statement, per The Star Tribune.
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Dayton told Minnesota Public Radio on Tuesday that football is "basically, slightly civilized war."
The governor pointed to a rash of Minnesota Vikings arrests this offseason as indication that NFL athletes struggle making the transition from the playing field to shopping for groceries and sitting in traffic with the rest of us. He defended Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, but pointed to a larger problem league-wide.
"Some of the psychological dynamics may be similar," Dayton said in Thursday's apology, "however, I, in no way, meant to compare their challenges with the traumas and hardships experienced by the heroes who fought in places like Iraq and Afghanistan. While I am a football fan, I reserve my highest respect and admiration for those courageous Americans in uniform, who risk their lives to keep us safe and to make the world more free. I regret my mistake, and I apologize for it."
We're glad we're not running for office.