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Harrison Butker's Address

The Kansas City Chiefs kicker has been called the best kicker in the NFL, but now the organization has formally distanced itself from comments he made during his commencement speech delivered on May 11. It wasn’t typical speech fare. Butker spoke against abortion, cohabitation, in vitro fertilization, surrogacy, and “degenerate values in the media.” He called President Biden’s act of making the sign of the cross at a prochoice rally “delusional.” He talked about dangerous gender ideologies and the tyranny of DEI.

He then appealed to the ladies in the audience, extolling the calling of wife and mother, choking up as he spoke of his own wife. Some of the women graduating would pursue careers, he said, but being a homemaker is one of the most important titles of all.

He turned to men, saying that they “set the tone of the culture” and that “when that is absent, . . . chaos sets in.” He made a rather fascinating point that the high rates of father absenteeism may be responsible for elevated violence rates in the U.S.

He spoke fondly of the traditional Latin mass (TLM), said Catholic bishops were “present-day apostles,” and bragged a bit about the college’s own embrace of tradition. He intimated that the use of birth control was playing God and that he and his wife would be saved through their marriage and childrearing.  

That’s my summary. Now for my take: The man is a conservative Catholic speaking at a conservative Catholic college. I don’t understand how he kindled such outrage given those facts. Historically Catholics have been prolife, pro-marriage, pro-traditional family, and pro-traditional sexuality. Are they not allowed to mention these things in their own schools? Butker speaking about his religious convictions in a religious context doesn’t ruin his football game, does it? Whether I agree or not is secondary to whether I have to agree. And the answer to that is, no, thank God!

But for those who care, do I agree? Well, not being a Catholic I don’t relate to all the talk of bishops and masses. And while I liked that he lifted up homemaking and childrearing as worthy careers, a fact that does seem lost to us in the West, I probably would allow for more flexibility on women’s role than he seemed to allow. Interestingly enough, some of the class of people most outraged by his un-feminism support Hamas, who aren’t known for their feminism.

After I listened to the address, I checked my shorts. They were not in a knot. Let’s all calm down and lower our stress responses to other people’s opinions. Let’s bring back a world where diversity of views made life interesting.

Watch the address here.



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