Skip to comments.In Miami, the Son Also Rises [New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees]
Posted on 02/15/2010 7:53:50 AM PST by Ebenezer
"Dont you live for that moment right there?"
That was former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiasons take on the final scene of Super Bowl XLIV: The Most Valuable Player, Saints quarterback Drew Brees, was holding his young son in his arms while his wife, young Baylans mother, looked on with a face full of joy a loving family sharing a momentous personal, cultural, and historic moment.
Its an image America needed. "Given that about one in four American boys are living apart from their dads at any one point in time, it is great to see a Super Bowl champion with his wife and son, and to see that this win is all the bigger for him for being shared with his son," Brad Wilcox, director of the National Marriage Project and associate professor of sociology at the University of Virginia, tells me.
Elizabeth Marquardt, author of Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce and director of the Center for Marriage and Families at the Institute for American Values, isnt a football fan, but she is a fan of that striking image. Brees wasnt simply using his son as a trophy, she explained, noting "how physically familiar he was with his son and vice versa."
"The physical familiarity got my attention because it suggested the father actually knows his son, and the son his father, and that only happens from real time spent together," Marquardt explained, "when mom and dad are sharing a home and a life. Even a busy football-hero dad is able to snuggle with and be there for his young son because theyre one family."
"Even in a football stadium of screaming fans the toddler boy didnt look anxious. He knew he was safe. He was with dad."
The image is all the more beautiful if you realize that Brees, who joined the New Orleans Saints in 2006, has said that he and his wife believe that they were called to New Orleans to be a part of the post-Katrina reconstruction, a cause for which they have raised money. No man is a canonized saint here on earth, but if Breess testimony to his faith is any indication, hes trying.
Shortly after the Saints victory 43 years in the waiting New Orleans native and pro-life attorney at the Bioethics Defense Fund Dorinda Bordlee set up "The Baby Brees Respect Life Fan Club" on Facebook in gratitude for the image. "The heart-melting photo of Drew Brees lifting his baby boy into the air conveyed that the gift of human life and love is even more valuable than lifting the Lombardi Super Bowl trophy. And thats saying quite a bit," noted Bordlee, a long-suffering Saints fan.
The Facebook group has many fans, male and female, but Bordlee says she is most moved by the men who have posted on her page. One wrote: "This picture is just great! It sends a beautiful message to all men that family is the most important thing we all have." Another man posted a note addressed to Brees: "Thanks for being the kind of athlete/role model my 9 & 11 year old boys need! They love the game, but also realize God and respect for life is so much bigger . . . you just proved it!"
"There is something so beautiful about seeing a father, at the height of his professional career, with the whole world cheering him, blocking all that out to share that moment with his son," Raymond Arroyo, a news anchor for the Catholic television network EWTN, himself a New Orleans native and father of sons, tells me. "One can imagine what that boy will think years from now when he sees himself with those ear protectors, in his father's arms at the end of the Super Bowl."
And in surveying reactions to the winning image, I note: Men tend to focus more often than not on the son. Jerome Ritcher observes: "From the perspective of the son there are fewer things than to be held and loved by your father, so if I was to use that picture of Brees with his son I would relate it from the perspective of the son. Every man was once a son and they all want to be approved by their father and Brees is giving this to his son by showing he is most important in his life." Besides being a son, husband, father, and football man, Richter, a Catholic high-school teacher in Bismarck, N.D., runs Knights of Virtue, a group for teenage boys focused on living virtuously, mastering passions, and being a hero in the world where they live.
Back in 1996, the late sociologist Elizabeth Fox-Genovese wrote in National Review that "fatherhood -- good fatherhood -- grounds the well-being of children; its absence painfully cripples them and all of us. Whatever we may like to believe, neither mothers alone nor the village can substitute, and the personal failings of individual men inescapably result in 'a major public crisis.'"
Fatherhood still may be in a state of crisis, but we're fighting for it, one devoted dad at a time. And Drew Brees is the latest poster boy. Like all of us, he's only human, but there's great virtue in both bucking him up and celebrating the beautiful Super Bowl moment that he shared with his wife, son and all of us. No paid ad time. No controversy. Only love.
Pelican State ping
And the best part of it is, they’ll have the entire off-season to get to know each other.
Looks like they know each other pretty well to me.
Look at the body language. There are thousands of screaming fans, flashing cameras, confetti, etc. That child knows the safety of daddy’s arms.
The ear muffs helped the kid deal with the sound.
As did the presence of "daddy" who was there at night most of the time. The child is loved. It was too bad Brees' mother committed suicide just before the season began. She never got to meet her grandchild.
As a competative shooter, I know they help. However, the volume in that stadium was deafening. The earmuffs helped, but it would still have been very loud for that child.
Any recent Democratic Presidents come to mind?
According to Wikipedia, “Brees’s mother, Mina Brees, died in 2009 at age 59. The death was ruled a suicide. Brees was briefly excused from training camp for a ‘family matter’. In 2006, Brees described their relationship as ‘nonexistent’ ever since he refused to hire her as his agent when he entered the NFL. After her death, Brees stated that this quote was three years old and that his relationship with his mother had been improving.”
When my daughter (eight) is sick, she wants Mom. When she is scared, she wants Dad.
It’s a beautiful image, expressive of the highest ideals. But beware of imagery. Tiger Woods cut a pretty picture too.
You can’t fake that. Seems like Brees is another Kurt Warner aka the real deal.
When Brees was here in San Diego, he used to come hang out at the local ball yards, just to watch. He’s sit quietly in the bleachers and if some kids came up to him, he’d smile shyly and sign autographs for them. He was always going to be a great dad.
I happen to know Drew and his family. They’re good people.
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