Travis Kelce doesn’t want to ‘judge’ Harrison Butker for ‘homemaker’ speech – National


NFL stars Travis Kelce and Jason Kelce are defending Travis’ teammate Harrison Butker after the Kansas City Chiefs kicker sparked outrage for encouraging women university grads to be “homemakers” during a commencement speech.

During a Friday episode of their New Heights podcast, the Kelce brothers said that they don’t agree with Butker’s views, but they don’t want to judge him for his religious beliefs. Butker is Catholic and gave his commencement speech at Benedictine College, a Catholic university.

Travis said that he’s known Butker for more than seven years and finds him to be a “great person and a great teammate.”

“I cherish him as a teammate,” Travis said. “He’s treated family and family that I’ve introduced to him with nothing but respect and kindness. And that’s how he treats everyone.”

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Click to play video: 'Harrison Butker’s controversial commencement speech draws mixed reaction'

Harrison Butker’s controversial commencement speech draws mixed reaction

But that doesn’t mean the Chiefs tight-end agrees with his controversial teammate’s opinions.

“When it comes down to his views and what he said at Saint Benedict’s commencement speech, those are his. 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. 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,” Travis said.

Butker’s address touched on a range of issues taken up by Christian conservatives, including Pride month, women’s roles in the home, abortion and in vitro fertilization. He attacked what he called “dangerous gender ideologies” in a reference to Pride month and compared the celebration to “deadly sins.” He also called President Joe Biden “delusional” and criticized his leadership during the pandemic and, most controversially, told the women graduates in the crowd that their “most important title” should be that of “homemaker.”

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Discussing his own family’s dynamic, Travis noted that both his mother and father “provided for our family.”

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“They were homemakers and they were providers and they were unbelievable at being present every single day in my life. That was a beautiful upbringing for me. I don’t think everyone should do it the way that my parents did, but I certainly, sure as hell, thank my parents and love my parents for being able to provide and making sure that home was what it was because I’m not the same person without both of them being who they were in my life,” he said.

Later in the conversation Travis said that part of the “beauty of team sports” is that “you put your differences aside for one goal in common.”

Jason said that he also doesn’t agree with Butker’s views but didn’t see how they could cause harm to the women in the audience.

“Make no mistake about it, a lot of the things that he said in his commencement speech are not things that I align myself with. But he’s giving a commencement speech at a Catholic university, and shocker, it ended up being a really religious and Catholic speech.”

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“To me, I can listen to somebody talk and take great value in it, like when he’s talking about the importance of family and the importance that a great mother can make, while also acknowledging that not everybody has to be a homemaker if that’s not what they want to do in life,” Jason continued.

“I’ve had so many people ask me, ‘What would you do if your daughters had to sit there and listen to somebody tell them, after they just earned a degree, that they should just go align to be homemakers?’ And I would say, ‘If my daughters listen to anybody tell them what to do, that they should be homemakers, then I’ve failed as a dad.’”

“If you let somebody up on a stage tell you that you can’t do that, and you’re like ‘Ah f–k, I guess I won’t go be a Fortune 500 CEO,’ like you weren’t going to make it. Like what are we talking about?” Jason said, adding that people should “move on” when they hear things they don’t agree with.

“I don’t get what the whole fuss is, quite honestly,” he said, before backtracking. “I mean, I get what the fuss is about because I know that certain groups have been persecuted against for a long period in this country, and women in particular.”

Jason also shared that his wife was a “bit frustrated by some of the comments.”

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The captain of the Chiefs, Patrick Mahomes, was the first of Butker’s teammates to comment on his commencement speech during a Wednesday scrum with reporters. Much like the Kelces, Mahomes defended his teammate while acknowledging that they don’t share the same views.

“I judge [Butker] by the character that he shows every single day, and that’s a good person, that’s someone who cares about the people around him, cares about his family and wants to make a good impact in society,” Mahomes said.

“When you’re in the locker room, there’s a lot of people from a lot of different areas of life and they have a lot of different views on everything. And we’re not always going to agree. There are certain things that he said that I don’t necessarily agree with but I understand the person that he is and he’s trying to do everything he can to lead people in the right direction.”

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Butker’s remarks have led to a petition calling for the Chiefs to fire him as a player.

As of Friday afternoon, a petition labelling his remarks as “sexist, homophobic, anti-trans, anti-abortion and racist” has garnered over 225,000 signatures.

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