Words cannot begin to express how sorry and saddened I am over what transpired. I let my family down, and I let this country down. I am actually grateful for this opportunity to publicly comment about my crimes, for which I am deeply sorry and ashamed. I apologize to the public, to whom I promised better.
For most of my life, I've been a football player, not a public speaker, so, you know, I really don't know, you know, how to say what I really want to say. I got heckled, and I took it badly, and I went into a rage. I operated a Ponzi scheme through the investment advisory side of my business. I did take a banned substance. I did have a relationship with Miss Lewinsky that was not appropriate--in fact, it was wrong.
I took part in a photo shoot that was supposed to be 'artistic' and now, seeing the photographs and reading the story, I feel so embarrassed. It was completely inappropriate, and we can understand why people were offended. Dogfighting is a terrible thing.
I'm 23 years old, and despite the successes I've had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way. I acted like a person completely out of control when I was arrested, and said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable. For me to be at a comedy club and flip out and say this crap, I'm deeply, deeply sorry.
Not for one second will I sit right here and point the finger and try to blame anybody else for my actions. As I engaged in my fraud, I knew what I was doing was wrong, indeed criminal. I have battled with the disease of alcoholism for all of my adult life and profoundly regret my horrific relapse. My cousin would administer it to me, but neither of us knew how to use it properly, proving just how ignorant we both were.
I want to say again to the American people how profoundly sorry I am for what I said and did to trigger these events. I'm going to be honest with you, the last 15 months have been very, very tough. I've been through divorce, I've been through tabloids, you name it. I miss playing baseball. I am seeking the counseling of my pastor, my mother and other loved ones and I am committed, with God's help, to emerging a better person. I need to grow up. My family and my faith will guide me through my life's journey.
I am disappointed not to live up to the standard I set for myself. And if I'm more disappointed with myself than anything it's because of all the young people, young kids that I've let down. I'm not a racist. That's what's so insane about this! In NO way was I making fun of any ethnicity! Thoughtless and stupid. I'm here to take my medicine. And I'm determined never to let anything like that happen again.
I'm really busted up over this and I'm very very sorry. While I would like to be able to talk about this more, until the legal issues are resolved, this is all I can say.
1 Chris Brown http://celebglitz.com/36408/Rihanna/chris-brown-apology-over-rihanna-assault.aspx
2 Bill Clinton http://www.perfectapology.com/clinton-apology-quotes.html
3 Bernie Madoff http://news.hereisthecity.com/news/business_news/8853.cntns
4 Eliot Spitzer http://gawker.com/5003644/spitzers-apology
5 Michael Vick http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2993103
6 Michael Richards http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,230727,00.html
7 Alex Rodriguez http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090217&content_id=3840704
8 Miley Cyrus http://www.celebuzz.com/miley-cyrus-reacts-photo-says-s83411/
9 Don Imus http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/07/arts/television/07imus.html
10 Michael Phelps http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/feb/02/phelps-says-he-is-sorry-for-his-marijuana-use/
11 Mel Gibson http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14080210/