Turner Sports commentator and former NBA star Charles Barkley on Sunday defended Adrian Peterson, the NFL star accused of going too far in a disciplinary beating he gave his 4-year-old son.
Barkley made the comments in an interview with host Jim Rome on CBS’s NFL pregame show. Peterson, one of the league’s top running backs, has been suspended by the Minnesota Vikings while the case plays out in Montgomery, Texas, where he has been charged with injury to a child, a felony.
Barkley said that community standards vary greatly when it comes to disciplining children, but Rome contended that “wrong is wrong, it doesn’t matter where you’re from.”
“I don’t believe that,” Barkley said, “because we spank kids in the South. There’s a question if Adrian Peterson went overboard, but … we all grow up in different environments. Every black parent in my neighborhood in the South would be in trouble, or in jail, under those circumstances. “
Rome said that there’s a difference between child rearing and child abuse, and that this was the latter.
“I’ve had many welts on my legs,” Barkley said. “I’ve gotten beaten with switches.”
Rome noted the differences between when Barkley was raised and today.
“That’s fair,” Barkley said, “but I think we really need to be careful in telling other people how to raise their kids.”