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Harrison Butker’s speech further exposes hypocrisy of the Left

Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker gives the commencement address at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, May 11, 2024.
Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker gives the commencement address at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, May 11, 2024. | YouTube/Benedictine College

At the 2024 graduation address before small private Benedictine College, Kansas City kicker Harrison Butker set off the same kind of insanity as with the recent pro-Hamas demonstrations ripping across our university campuses. In his address, Butkner spoke as a devout Roman Catholic to primarily fellow Catholics at Catholic Benedictine asserting, “Our Catholic faith has always been countercultural. Our Lord, along with countless followers, were all put to death for their adherence to her teachings. The world around us says that we should keep our beliefs to ourselves whenever they go against the tyranny of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We fear speaking truth, because now, unfortunately, truth is in the minority.”

Butkner went on to proclaim biblical teachings regarding marriage, fatherhood, and motherhood. He praised the accomplishments of the female graduates but asked them to consider the importance of motherhood: “I can tell you that my beautiful wife, Isabelle, would be the first to say that her life truly started when she began her vocation as a wife and mother.” Holding back tears, Butkner told the students, “all my success is made possible because the girl I met in band class back in middle school would convert to the faith, become my wife, and embrace one of the most important titles of all: homemaker.” As expected, progressives went insane in hypocrisy.

Within days of Butker’s speech, the Left demanded the Kansas City Chiefs fire him from the team. Though Butker’s speech contained not one word about race, the leftist petition (signed by over 100,000 at this writing) accused Butker of racism. The petition included every accusation in the progressive cancel-culture playbook. The petition read: “The harmful remarks by Harrison Butkner ... were sexist, homophobic, anti-trans, anti-abortion and racist … (and) perpetuate division and undermine human rights.” Butker allegedly created a “toxic environment.” It went so far as to accuse Butker of contributing to “hate crimes” and “harming the mental health” of “targeted communities.” The petition concluded, “we call upon the Kansas City Chiefs management to dismiss Harrison Butker immediately for his inappropriate conduct.”

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Ironically, the wife of the Chiefs’ owner defended Butker’s speech and publicly agreed with the sentiments regarding the importance of the role of women as mothers and wives.

Disappointingly, the NFL threw Butker under the bus. NFL Senior Vice President Jonathan Beane, the league’s chief diversity and inclusion officer, hypocritically disclaimed Butker’s views as being in opposition to that of the NFL and claimed, “The NFL is steadfast in our commitment to inclusion, which only makes our league stronger.” Obviously, the “inclusion” does not “include” biblical views counter to the progressive monopoly. 

Due to the intolerance of his biblical viewpoints, attempts were made to target Butker and his family by doxing them online. This intolerance went beyond Butkner and against all conservative Catholics, generating a letter from the premier Catholic organization, Catholic Vote, to the NFL commissioner and Chief’s Chairman, decrying the “anti-Catholic bigotry” and “growing hatred, intimidation, and now threats of violence” against Catholics. Noting NFL hypocrisy, the letter asked: “Does this inclusion include Catholics, pro-life Americans, mothers, and those who hold traditional moral beliefs? ... We are hopeful, however, that you do not intend to send a message to Catholics, or to those that still uphold moral tenets of a civilized society, that they are outsiders and no longer welcome.”

Unfortunately, the NFL has given no indication it plans to welcome “that” kind of diversity.

The bitter irony is that this comes on the heels of the Left’s open demonstrations of support for Hamas against Israel occurring primarily on “elite” university campuses. While the Left feigns outrage over Butker’s address as allegedly “undermining human rights” and causing “hate crimes” and worse, they further the aims of what is truly undermining human rights. Not only is homosexuality and transsexuality illegal under the Palestinian (Hamas) government of Gaza, but women are also legally second-class citizens. In addition to the restrictive clothing requirements and far fewer legal rights than men in civil and criminal court, women in Gaza cannot even travel outside the home in Gaza without a husband or male relative. Yet despite Israel offering all rights to women, including over a million female Arab Muslim Israeli citizens, the Left has sided with the misogynists who raped, tortured, murdered, and kidnapped hundreds of women on October 7.

Americans have woken up to the insanity of the Left through what they have seen on so many college campuses since October 7. They can now view the insane hypocrisy in the response to a conservative speech at a small conservative college. All Americans, whether Catholic or not, need to support Butker and make clear that the hypocritical progressive monopoly on speech is over. We are one nation under God — and holding biblical views is our right.

Bill Connor, a retired Army Infantry colonel, author and Orangeburg attorney, has deployed multiple times to the Middle East. Connor was the senior U.S. military adviser to Afghan forces in Helmand Province, where he received the Bronze Star. A Citadel graduate with a JD from USC, he is also a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Army War College, earning his master of strategic studies. He is the author of the book Articles from War.

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