Latest Update: NFL Issues Direct Response to Controversial Graduation Speech From Chiefs Kicker Harrison Butker.

Harrison Butker

 

After Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker gave a controversial graduation commencement speech at Benedictine College that led to heavy criticism, the National Football League finally shared its official response.

 

Harrison Butker

On May 15, Jonathan Beane, the NFL’s senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer, told People, β€œHarrison Butker gave a speech in his personal capacity. 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.”

Many others have also shared statements condemning Butker’s speech, such as Justice Horn, former Kansas City commissioner, who wrote, “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. 🌈.”

The speech got heavy backlash for Butker’s problematic comments regarding gender roles, abortion, IVF and more, such as when he told the women in the audience that “one of the most important titles of all” for them was “homemaker.”

Criticism was amplified due to the fact that he also quoted singer Taylor Swift in his speech, although he didn’t name her, instead saying, “As my teammate’s girlfriend says, ‘familiarity breeds contempt.'”

Swifties quickly called him out for his statements, especially given the fact that he appeared to put down the idea of women focusing on their careers yet referenced Swift, one of the most successful businesswomen in the world right now.

In the days since the speech, people in attendance have also started sharing their reactions to the moment, with one new graduate calling the speech “horrible” and noting that she, her roommate, and some others did “boo” Butker as he spoke.

As of writing, Butker has not shared any response to the backlash to his speech.