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Photo By Mayra Beltran/Houston Chronicle
Bonita Jackson, mother of Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, talks about her son the day after he placed on the Commissioner’s exempt list on Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014, in Houston.

Seated on a couch at her home overlooking a golf course in Spring, Bonita Jackson dabbed her eyes with a tissue as she discussed her distress over the highly charged debate that’s playing out over allegations that her son, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, injured his 4-year-old son by spanking him with a tree branch.

Peterson, 29, is far different from how he’s been portrayed in the media frenzy and in nightly discussions among sports figures and celebrities over the efficacy of corporal punishment, his mother said. She describes Peterson as a loving father who adores his children and who was only applying the same type of discipline that he had received as a child.

“I don’t care what anybody says, most of us disciplined our kids a little more than we meant sometimes,” said Jackson, 50. “But we were only trying to prepare them for the real world. When you whip those you love, it’s not about abuse, it’s about love. You want to make them understand that they did wrong.”

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