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NFL rejects Harrison Butker's transphobic, sexist graduation speech remarks

Harrison Butker
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

The league's chief diversity officer said Butker's views do not represent the organization.


The NFL has come out against comments made by Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker in a commencement speech last weekend.

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In the talk, which has been roundly blasted by LGBTQ+ advocates, Butker targeted LGBTQ+ rights, abortion, women in the workplace, and more.

“Harrison Butker gave a speech in his personal capacity,” Jonathan Beane, the league's senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer, told People in a 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.”

The statement to People is the first the NFL has made about the graduation speech.

In his 20-minute speech, the football player attacked various social issues, starting with what he called “dangerous gender ideologies.” He referenced Pride Month, claiming, “Not the deadly sins 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.”

Butker also said, “Bad policies and poor leadership have negatively impacted major life issues. Things like abortion, IVF, surrogacy, euthanasia, as well as a growing support for degenerate cultural values and media all stem from the pervasiveness of disorder.”

Related: Harrison Butker’s ‘inaccurate, ill-informed and woefully out of step' sexist speech is fact-checked by GLAAD

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis was sharply critical of Butker’s remarks.

“Traditionally, commencement speeches are meant to celebrate and inspire graduates and their families. Kansas City Chiefs player Harrison Butker’s commencement speech was not only a clear miss, it was inaccurate, ill-informed, and woefully out of step with Americans about Pride, LGBTQ people and women,” Ellis said.

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