The San Diego Padres will be honoring the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community Sunday at a "San Diego Pride" event to be held during the professional baseball team's game on July 8.
"Out at the Park – San Diego Pride Night" has disturbed several Christian groups in the area who had seen the team as a family-friendly organization and have been getting fellow Christians who disagree with the promotion to send emails to the Padres.
"This action by the San Diego Padres management has greatly tarnished their record as being a family-friendly organization," explained Phil Magnan, director for Biblical Family Advocates, a Christian pro-family organization, in a statement. "They have truly offended the moral and religious sensibilities of literally thousands of fans. I will never look at the Padres the same way that I have over the past 40 plus years here in San Diego, enjoying its image as being pro-family. It is really sad."
During the ballgame, supporters and volunteers known in the LGBT movement will be recognized, and to open the contest, the Gay Men's Chorus of San Diego will sing the National Anthem.
Discount tickets are also available through the Padres website for "everyone who wants to show their support of equality, freedom and diversity."
Christians leaders are worried that the event is somewhat targeting children since the festivities will be held on the same day that free hats are being given away to kids.
"Most people do not want to have their children visually ambushed by seeing highly immoral behavior," said Magnan. "I want to know why the Padre management would do this especially on a day that the Padres are giving away free caps to kids."
Those that have written letters to the organization have expressed that they have not been taken seriously. Despite this, pro-family groups are encouraging fans to contact the Padres and tell them that they do not want the event, which will just normalize homosexuality in society.
"Will families any longer find a wholesome national baseball event for their children as these pride events are spread throughout the U.S.?" concluded Magnan. "[P]erhaps next year's ticket sales will reflect the views of those who are affected by the Padres Management."
The Padres will be hosting the Atlanta Braves at their home field PETCO Park in downtown San Diego. The Padres are currently vying for the lead in the NL West division.