Harrison Butker Stands by His Controversial Graduation Speech


Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker said Friday that his recent commencement address at Benedictine College was “a decision I’ve consciously made and one I do not regret at all” despite the controversy it created.

The three-time Super Bowl champion faced criticism for urging female graduates to “embrace” their roles as homemakers and for criticizing President Joe Biden, a fellow Catholic, over his stance on abortion, which Butker said includes “support for the murder of innocent babies.”

Speaking at a gala Friday in Nashville, Tennessee, in his first public appearance since his controversial remarks, Butker addressed the attention his comments have garnered.

“It is now, over the past few days, my beliefs or what people think I believe have been the focus of countless discussions around the globe,” Butker stated. “At the outset, many people expressed a shocking level of hate. But as the days went on, even those who disagreed with my viewpoints shared their support for my freedom of religion.”

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and head coach Andy Reid recently commented on Butker’s statements, echoing similar sentiments about the protection of speech and religious freedoms in the United States.

Tight end Travis Kelce, who has also attracted off-field attention in recent months, shared on his podcast New Heights with Jason and Travis Kelce that while Butker’s views do not align with his own, he still values their camaraderie as teammates.

“I can’t say I agree with the majority of it or just about any of it outside of just him loving his family and his kids,” Kelce remarked. “And I don’t think that I should judge him by his views, especially his religious views, of how to go about life, that’s just not who I am.”

The NFL recently announced its 2024 schedule, featuring a Sept. 5 season opener in Kansas City between the Chiefs and the Baltimore Ravens, whom the Chiefs defeated in the AFC championship game in January.

Robert Stewart
Robert Stewart
North America Correspondent.

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