The NFL & Kansas City Chiefs push back on Harrison Butker’s homophobia

This week, we discussed Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker, who gave a commencement address to the graduating class of Benedictine College. Butker’s address was wildly misogynistic, as he told the young women in the audience that they should do nothing with their degrees, and they should find a man, get married and immediately pop out babies forever. He also said some crazy sh-t about how “abortion, IVF, surrogacy, euthanasia” are part of “degenerate cultural values.” Oh, and he said some homophobic sh-t about Pride Month and more. He hit all of the sweet spots of the American culture wars and I would imagine that he’s already becoming the right-wing’s favorite culture warrior. Well, the NFL has now responded to Butker’s misogyny and homophobia:

The NFL is batting down comments made by kicker Harrison Butker in the wake of his controversial commencement address. In his speech at the graduation ceremony at Benedictine College on Saturday, May 11, the 28-year-old Georgia Tech alum took aim at the LGBTQ+ community, working women, abortion rights and more, drawing heavy criticism.

Commenting on Butker’s speech for the first time May 15, the NFL said that his views differ from those of the organization.

“Harrison Butker gave a speech in his personal capacity,” Jonathan Beane, the NFL’s senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer, tells PEOPLE in a written statement. “His views are not those of the NFL as an organization. The NFL is steadfast in our commitment to inclusion, which only makes our league stronger.”

Former Kansas City commissioner Justice Horn slammed Butker in a post, writing, “Harrison Butker doesn’t represent Kansas City nor has he ever. Kansas City has always been a place that welcomes, affirms, and embraces our LGBTQ+ community members.”

[From People]

What’s funny is that the NFL realized years and years ago that their franchise could only expand if they were more inclusive of women and LGBTQ+ fans. We saw that last year when Taylor Swift began dating Travis Kelce – a perfect storm where millions of new fans (most of them women, girls and gay Swifties) suddenly started paying attention to football. Butker thinks that it’s still the before-times, where football is for men and he can tell women to stay in the kitchen. Please.

Now that Butker is famous, people are really going through his life with a fine-tooth comb. Did you know his mother is an accomplished physicist who has worked at Emory University’s Department of Radiation Oncology for decades? Also, Butker’s former Georgia Tech classmates are telling stories about a hookup with a male cheerleader. Oh. That actually explains a lot, if it’s true.

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94 Responses to “The NFL & Kansas City Chiefs push back on Harrison Butker’s homophobia”

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  1. Amanda says:

    100% an American Beauty situation.

  2. sevenblue says:

    😭😭😭omfg, of course he is (allegedly) closeted. He wants women to stay home, so he can only interact with the men outside??!!

    • Agnes says:

      He’s pals with Josh Hawley, the effete J6er senator from Missouri who wrote the book hilariously entitled “Manhood.” Many rumors of Josh being in the closet. I believe the alleged allegations about Butker hooking up with male cheerleaders, many suppressed homosexuals seem to be misogynists.

      • Bettyrose says:

        Declaring your manhood by belittling women is page one in the toxic masculinity handbook. There’s an entire episode of Buffy on this topic, which is the media analysis we need.

      • Agnes says:

        Where’s our favorite vampire slayer when we need her most!

      • Bettyrose says:

        And remember in a later episode the former toxic jock tells Xander “I’m so out my grandmother is setting me up with guys.”

      • Agnes says:

        Well, I wish Josh and Harrison would get married to each other and leave us gals alone!

      • kirk says:

        Which Buffy episode(s) are about this?

      • bettyrose says:

        @Kirk – It’s during the high school years. There’s a sexist jock who is constantly harassing the girls at Sunnydale high, and ends up being the first (of many) LGBT recurring characters on the show. I’m sure you can find it if you search the episodes.

      • Nic919 says:

        The awkward photos of Josh Hawley kissing his wife don’t help the closeted rumours. The photos are so bad that compared to Will and Kate it makes the latter look like hot lovers.

  3. seaflower says:

    Did the Chiefs push back? I can see someone from KC commissioner but nothing from the club itself. Unless I missed something.

    • Pinkosaurus says:

      I’d be shocked if the Chiefs say anything. Don’t want to offend their fans with any “woke” messaging. You know, the Chiefs with the racist name and mascot they refuse to change and the stadium full of fans doing the inexcusable tomahawk chop every game, some wearing “headdresses”.

      • Katy says:

        Yupppppp. Chiefs are gonna keep keeping their heads down so they don’t have to go through two years of new name search limbo like the then Redskins now Commanders did.

        And they should change it. But from a business/marketing perspective, damn that’s an enormously expensive undertaking that every higher up is going to avoid like the plague. Especially for a team like the Chiefs, who are basically this decades Patriots.

    • Lau says:

      Also it doesn’t sound like he’s going to get any actual punishment for saying bullsh*t over and over again. They’ll probably let him keep on spewing bigot nonsense.

      • ML says:

        Thank you, Lau! “We don’t like what he said and that’s not what we stand for,” is a very weak response!! This sounds like they don’t want to offend anyone (neither women nor douche bros), but this is not really condemning misogyny at all. Where is his team in all this?

        Next, saying that this douche spewed misogyny because he is in the closet: WTF? Being gay is absolutely separate from hating women and wanting to return to the 1800s. That sounds homophobic: stop that!

    • Flamingo says:

      The owners of the Kansas City Chiefs are the Hunt family. They are super Christian Conservatives. I doubt they will say anything. And if anything I wouldn’t be surprised if he vetted the speech through their PR team. Getting the green light on the speech from them. Which is why he was so bold with his words.

      All these people lean into this rhetoric.

      • The GOP is the last bastion of the closeted gay. There are so many that are easy to see and we are seeing the tip of the iceberg. They all act the same. They are fiercely anti gay, proving their manhood. MTG has the largest balls in the GOP.

    • Kitten says:

      It’s the NFL not the NBA. The franchise owners are 95% conservative white men. They won’t push back because most of them probably agree with this douchebag.

  4. Josephine says:

    And the people he just spit on would 100% support him if it turns out that he is gay and comes out.

  5. OriginalMich says:

    Lol! I’ve seen a few tweets about his college sexploits. Clearly wasn’t a secret. Also, his fake teeth are really off-putting. They look like a mouth guard.

    • Deering24 says:

      Why do all these trad-bros wear slabs of beard on their faces? Is it some Andrew Tate thing–though IIRC, he’s clean-shaven…

  6. Beckshere says:

    Explains so much! Resented Mommy because she worked so much. Filled with self-loathing and has not come to terms with his homosexuality.

    • Beckshere says:

      Plus he’s auditioning for a job as a right wing commentator after his NFL career which may come to an end next year as his contract expires.

    • Mimi says:

      His poor mom.

    • Kitten says:

      A tale as old as time…

    • Deering24 says:

      If I had a buck for all the incels and trad-bros who had high-achieving mothers–and have deep-seated hatred for the latter for not being Donna Reed in “Father Knows Best,”–I’d be loaded. 🙄🤮

  7. Amy Bee says:

    Him being in closet explains his ultra christianity.

  8. girl_ninja says:

    This is completely superficial but this Harrison person is incredibly ugly. He was basically looking before all this shit he spewed but whew…is he ever unattractive.

    • girl_ninja says:

      *very not ever but that fits too.

    • Nutella toast says:

      Somewhere Aaron Rodgers is sobbing in his morning smoothie because the guy might be more popular than him with the MAGA crowd, and he might take his place as the icon of toxic white masculinity. This guy definitely took the time to hit all the talking points about Covid too. Maybe he’ll be Trump‘s VP pick? 🙄

  9. CC says:

    I do wonder how the school made this decision. “Okay, we’ve got a very exciting shortlist of commencement guest speakers: Oprah, Salman Rushdie, or White Man Kick Ball Real Good.”

    • C says:

      Benedictine College is a private Catholic institution and Butker has made these comments before, I think they knew exactly what he was going to say.

      I signed the petition for the Chiefs to dismiss him, it won’t make any difference at all but it amuses me greatly to see the numbers of signatures keep climbing waaaay past the original goal, lol.

    • Bettyrose says:

      I’m just chuckling at “Oprah or Salman Rushdie.” Can you imagine? Not enough security in all of Kansas to keep those two safe at a rabid right wing college

    • MaryContrary says:

      It’s an extremely conservative Catholic school. He’s espousing traditional values that they agree with.

      • Mimi says:

        Please put “traditional” in quotes. This is toxic, regressive shit that should not be a part of anyone’s tradition.

      • MaryContrary says:

        Not liking it or agreeing with it in today’s world does not mean they are not “traditional.” You can’t change the meaning of a word to suit your own ends.

      • bettyrose says:

        I would agree with Mimi on this one. Both of my grandmothers were homemakers, as was done in their era, but neither one was submissive or docile, nor were they actively religious. What Butker was advocating for was a power imbalance in which a woman’s entire existence is to support her husband’s goals and raise his children, and he justifies it as a commandment of a church. That’s a fringe aspect of traditional gender roles, not “traditional” in a larger sense.

      • Nic919 says:

        Jesuits are “traditionally” known for encouraging education of men and women in the Catholic faith so this is just a regressive school.

  10. Kittenmom says:

    I wonder how his parents feel now? Either they are wearing bags over their heads when they are out in public, or…possibly they raised him to have these views? Disappointing to think that of such an intelligent mom, but 🤷🏻‍♀️ anything is possible.

    • MaryContrary says:

      I am pretty sure I read that he does not have any kind of relationship with his mother-which could definitely explain a lot of his “issues.”

      • Bettyrose says:

        I’ve been wondering about the mother situation. He pressured his high school girlfriend to convert to his religion and be a trad wife while the mother was engaged in high level academic research. Clearly a rift started early on. Mommy issues.

  11. Lucy says:

    You know who I REALLY want to hear from? His mom, the medical physicist who works in oncology. She owes us absolutely nothing and yet at the same time that’s a public statement I would very much enjoy reading.

  12. Blithe says:

    Don’t forget the “tyranny of diversity, equity and inclusion” part. I wonder how sharing that particular “minority…truth” has gone over with his teammates.

    • JulesB says:

      YES! Let’s not forget that part of Butker’s speech: “the tyranny of diversity, equity and inclusion”. He took shots at multiple under-represented groups – 53% of NFL players are black – I wonder how this will play out in the locker room.

      • Bettyrose says:

        I can only imagine that black NFL players are so accustomed to toxic white behavior that it’s just a Tuesday for them. Something broke Kap and he couldn’t take it anymore.

      • Truthiness says:

        Team captains like Mahomes and Chris Jones are black plus they could snap him like a twig. Butker’s not one of the alpha males there, Mahomes, Jones and Kelce are.

      • A Guest says:

        Word is nobody liked him before this, so…

    • Bad Janet says:

      Oh, F*** this guy.

      I live in one of the red controlled stages where they are attacking anything DEI adjacent and it’s already gotten nastier. I’m sure he would love it, but there are a lot of people here who aren’t white men who have other thoughts on it.

  13. ErgGirl says:

    Go get him, Swifties. And anyone else that cares about equal rights. What a loser.

    • Flamingo says:

      I would love the Swifties to go after him. But more importantly, Taylor needs to make a statement. He used her song to twist to his sick agenda. She stood up and made a speech when Scooter Braun was affecting her coin.

      Is she going to step up or stay quiet again to appease the right wing and Travis as a Chief player. He hasn’t said anything either as far as I can tell. They didn’t mention it on their podcast yesterday. But they may have recorded it before the speech blew up.

      I will be watching next weeks podcast to see if they address it or not.

    • Bad Janet says:

      if Tay Tay’s army can do one thing for the world, let it be this.

  14. MaryContrary says:

    It would be nice if everyone could remember that college graduations are supposed to be a time of celebrating the graduates and their accomplishments instead of turning it into a way of airing political grievances and people’s takes on hot button issues.

    • kirk says:

      College “graduations are supposed to be a time of celebrating the graduates and their accomplishments.” My question is what courses should these young women be taking to qualify for “their most important” job? Home economics hasn’t been taught in secondary schools for ages. Colleges that offer “food science” type curriculum usually locate them in the Business or Ag Science departments, neither of which focus on a non-commercial home environment. Psychology degree then to help in child rearing? Sounds to me like the best ‘home ec’ type lesson these young women could learn is not to squander 4-yrs time and treasure to attain an academic degree that will not further their goals in getting “their most important job.”

  15. Juxtapoze says:

    I really wish more men, in large numbers, would call out this patriarchal BS. We women are exhausted. Truly & utterly exhausted fighting for basic common decency and equal rights. We can’t end this cycle otherwise.

  16. Scarlett says:

    Isn’t this dude, whatshisname… the physicist Elizabeth Butker’s son? Talk about mommy issues.

    The call is coming from within a closet inside the house, the internet is forever.

    I hope he gets the help he needs to live his authentic life.

  17. BlueNailsBetty says:

    Was this guy introduced as an NFL/KC football player before his speech? Because if his job was referenced then this wasn’t “a speech in a personal capacity”. If he used his job and work title then he gave a hate speech using the KC Chiefs and NFL to back up his “expertise”.

    If that is what happened he needs to be fired immediately.

    Also, I totally agree this guy is closeted.

    • DaveW says:

      That was my thought too. He was also only invited to speak because he is an NFL player on a winning Super Bowl team. Did his agent/manager negotiate the terms of his speaking, etc.? I’m sure the “speaking in his capacity as a private citizen” is also a workaround if his remarks violated any terms in his contract when officially representing the team.

    • Renee' says:

      The NFL doesn’t fire men who physically abuse women on tape so I guarantee they won’t fire a man over words. The NFL only cares if you can throw a ball accurately, run fast, catch or kick.

      • DaveW says:

        So true!

      • Flamingo says:

        Or abusing dogs, lets not forget Michael Vick went right back to the NFL in 2009 with the Philadelphia Eagles (ironically Jason Kelce fomer team), Jets and Steelers. Before he retired in 2017.

  18. TN Democrat says:

    The Republican magat nutters aren’t just coming for women’s rights (which is bad enough). The Republican push to destroy public education with vouchers means tax payers are going to fund extremists to indoctrinate the next generation into this toxicity.

    • Blithe says:

      We’re already doing this. While they’re pushing for vouchers, some areas have really, um, lenient standards for charter schools. And charter schools not only pull money from the general public school budgets, they often have an application process that leaves the general public schools responsible for what becomes a higher percentage of special education students — with all of the laws and expenses that go along with that. These people have really played the long game to destroy public education. They’ve been planning multi-pronged approaches since Brown vs Board of Ed passed in 1954.

  19. Cheshire Sass says:

    What is it with these hateful closet cases? It is so disturbing to have so much hate in your heart for your own self, and others that you feel the need to have toxic control over everything.

  20. QuiteContrary says:

    I’m just so incredibly tired.

    Between the impending doom of the November election, and hateful morons like this guy, and the other attacks on women’s freedom and LGBTQ+ rights, I’m exhausted. Not giving up, but exhausted.

  21. Sass says:

    Has anyone seen his “this was taken out of context” response?

    I am paraphrasing but he said “people are taking what I said out of context. I’m saying we should go back to the 50s when women had more babies than thoughts” WHAT. How is this man this stupid. Obviously his earlier speech was taken EXACTLY in context. Thanks for clarifying I guess?

    • Flamingo says:

      holy moly really! I bet this guy longs for the anetbelleum times..

    • Kitten says:

      Are you f*cking KIDDING me?? That is an exact quote? Was he just trying to be funny cuz holy shit that is bad.

    • BeanieBean says:

      NO!! He said that??? 🤦‍♀️🤮

    • Barbie1 says:

      There are so many people out there like him it’s frightening.

    • Sass says:

      UPDATE I JUST FOUND OUT THIS WAS FROM A SATIRE SITE. A friend of mine with whom I regularly text told me about it today and she didn’t do her research; neither did I because I trusted that she had. I’m so sorry. This guy did not double down (yet).

      • BeanieBean says:

        Thank you for the update. So interesting that so many of us found it believable, though!

  22. Rnot says:

    1. I’m 95% sure he didn’t write this speech himself. I’m guessing his pastor wrote it.

    2. He’s just made himself unemployable in any org with functional HR. He could never be in a position of power over women or minorities. He’s a hostile workplace lawsuit all wrapped in a bow. So his post-NFL options are going to be working with/for some pretty unpleasant people.

    • Flamingo says:

      None of these people write their own speeches. But the buck stops with them as they represent it and endorse it.

  23. NotSoSocialB says:

    I said he was closeted yesterday. It’s so obvious.

  24. Heather says:

    Gotta wonder how many teams will happily take a ‘roughing the kicker’ penalty just for fun this year…

    There is an interview on Pat McAfee’s podcast with Patrick Mahomes who says in no uncertain terms that he does not speak to Butker. I imagine that goes for most of the Chiefs’ locker room lol. But he made much the same speech last year at Georgia Tech’s commencement I believe—-they know who he is. What he is.

  25. MaryContrary says:

    Okay, I just read his commencement address in full. Twice. There is nothing in it about homosexuality. He doesn’t tell the women in the audience not to have careers or to just “pop out babies.” Is he very Catholic-yes. He’s against IVF and abortion. He’s pro-Latin mass. Personally, I’m pro-choice and pro-IVF. I’m not Catholic-so it’s not up to me to tell them how to practice their faith. I know cancelling people for views we don’t agree with has become part of our culture. But he’s literally at a Catholic school (and not a liberal one like Georgetown) encouraging them to practice their faith. If he was running for office, I would not vote for him. But he’s entitled to his opinions.

    • Libra says:

      He does refer to the Pride community as deadly sins and mocked a whole month dedicated to Pride

      • MaryContrary says:

        He did not reference that in this speech. And again-I don’t need to agree with his opinions. He’s speaking at a very conservative Catholic college-these are his people.

    • ArtFossil says:

      Did you miss this sentence?

      “I am certain the reporters at the AP could not have imagined that their attempt to rebuke and embarrass places and people like those here at Benedictine wouldn’t be met with anger, but instead met with excitement and pride. Not the deadly sin sort of pride that has an entire month dedicated to it, but the true God-centered pride that is cooperating with the Holy Ghost to glorify him.”

      “The deadly sin sort of pride that has an entire month dedicated to it.” Yes, Butler called being gay a deadly sin.

      • MaryContrary says:

        He’s not saying anything that conservative Catholics disagree with. Again-I don’t believe in it personally. But I’m not his audience: the conservative Catholics listening to him are.

      • Chloe says:

        Yeah but just because conservative Catholics agree with him, it doesn’t make it any less homophobic. “Hate the sin, love the sinner” is used all the time to justify homophobia. He’s spreading homophobia to a bunch of likely homophobic people.

      • C says:

        Horrible people having an audience for their views doesn’t mean the views are legitimate, there are plenty of historical examples to illustrate this.
        And there were women in the audience who have since spoken about how terrible this speech made them feel, on Tiktok etc.

      • Tsar says:

        Exactly. Contrary to Mary Contrary’s “He did not reference that in this speech.”, he absolutely did. Very selective reading going on there.

    • Elizabeth Bowman says:

      My view is, you’re not “entitled to your opinions” when they’re political weapons (like his reference to the Democratic president as evil) and will affect other people’s freedoms (in particular, the freedoms of historically marginalized persons like Black people) as seen in his mocking reference to diversity, equity, and inclusion. This is not “just his opinion.” Pineapple on pizza, now that’s an opinion. Rolling back human rights is fascism.

    • C says:

      I don’t “have” to respect anyone’s opinions. Nobody is calling for him to be jailed for his speech. If he has freedom of speech, so do I.

      • BlueToile says:

        @C, you and I are of one mind. I find it annoying, too, when I am told I have to “respect (someone’s) opinion.” Um…NO. I have to respect their right to HAVE an opinion, not respect the opinion itself, nor the person who holds such an opinion. People have the right to express an opinion and I have the right to reject it, and them, for holding opinions that take away the rights and humanity of others.

    • Nic919 says:

      The pope is the head of the Catholic Church and since Vatican II in 1963 the Latin mass is not used. So he is going on about things that aren’t even part of the Catholic faith. It’s right wing GOP nonsense. Bet he’s not against the death penalty which is also against the Catholic faith.

      So it’s hateful bullshit and not even real Catholicism.

  26. Saucy&Sassy says:

    I think if the Chiefs was the football team in my city, I would encourage ALL women, and the men who support them and consider them equals, and LBGTQ+ to boycott a specific game. Let’s see how the Chiefs would like that?

  27. Mel says:

    Bottom line, whether he likes it or not or anyone else understands it, as long as he takes the field as a member of the Chiefs whatever he does publicly reflects on their brand and this reflects badly on their brand and the NFL brand. It takes a special kind of disdain and arrogance to go to an event and insult the people there. Do you think someone who just worked hard for four years really wants to listen to some Dude with hurt feelings /Mommy issues tell them that their accomplishments are a waste of time because the only thing she’s meant for is marrying some neanderthal and birthin dem babies? Really? His Mother apparently is a well known physicist, he needs to check himself.