Chiefs’ Harrison Butker ‘said nothing wrong’ during faith-based commencement speech, religious group says

Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker was the commencement speaker at a private college in Kansas last weekend. The three-time Super Bowl winner brought up several topics during his roughly 20-minute-long speech at Benedictine College.

At one point during the address, he encouraged women in the graduating class to embrace their “vocation” as a “homemaker.” Butker also assailed Pride month, which has served as a particularly significant time for the LGBTQ+ community on an annual basis.

“I think it is you, the women, who have had the most diabolical lies told to you,” Butker said.

“Some of you may go on to lead successful careers in the world, but I would venture to guess that the majority of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into this world. I can tell you that my beautiful wife Isabelle would be the first to say that her life truly started when she started living her vocation as a wife and as a mother,” he said.

Harrison Butker warms up

Harrison Butker #7 of the Kansas City Chiefs warms up before the game against the Philadelphia Eagles prior to Super Bowl LVII at State Farm Stadium on February 12, 2023 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Cooper Neill/Getty Images)

Butker also took aim at President Joe Biden for his position on abortion and his administration’s COVID-19 policies.


“While COVID might have played a large role throughout your formative years, it is not unique,” he said. “The bad policies and poor leadership have negatively impacted major life issues. Things like abortion, IVF, surrogacy, euthanasia, as well as a growing support for the degenerate cultural values and media, all stem from pervasiveness of disorder.”


Butker also encouraged women to embrace what he called the “most important titles of all” as a Catholic.

“For the ladies present today, congratulations on an amazing accomplishment. You should be proud of all that you have achieved to this point in your young lives,” he said. “I want to speak directly to you briefly, because I think it is you, the women, who have had the most diabolical lies told to you. How many of you are sitting here now, about to cross this stage, and are thinking about all the promotions and titles you are going to get in your career? Some of you may go on to lead successful careers in the world, but I would venture to guess that the majority of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into this world.”

harrison butker speaks during media press

Harrison Butker of the Kansas City Chiefs speaks during a media press during Super Bowl LVIII Opening Night on Feb. 5, 2024, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Robin Alam/ISI Photos)

In a statement to People magazine, the NFL said Butker spoke from a “personal capacity” during the speech.

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

Harrison Butker

Harrison Butker #7 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks on from the sideline during the national anthem prior to an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium on November 20, 2023 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Perry Knotts/Wesley Hitt)

CatholicVote, a non-profit advocacy group, addressed a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Chiefs CEO Clark Hunt shortly after the league released its statement on Butker.

“In that speech, for which he received a standing ovation, Butker called on Catholics to live up to the high ideals of our Faith, including the defense of the dignity of every human life, the foundational role of the family, and the gift of motherhood,” Burch wrote on May 16.

“These ideals are not controversial for millions of Americans and indeed remain sacred for millions of religious believers, including millions of your fans and customers. A recent statement by the league distancing itself from Butker for his remarks calls into question your commitment to genuine diversity and inclusion.”


CatholicVote wrote on X that Butker “said nothing wrong” and also addressed Butker’s speech on Instagram.

“THIS. IS. POWERFUL. Catholic Super Bowl Champ Harrison Butker drops TRUTH bombs about courage, faith, and leadership,” the organization wrote.

Bukter also received support from his teammate Chris Jones.

“I love you @buttkicker7! My brotha,” Jones wrote on X, formerly Twitter, after a petition surfaced urging the Chiefs to release the kicker.

When an X user wondered whether Jones would delete the post, the five-time defensive tackle said, “Negative.”

Fox News Digital contacted the Kansas City Chiefs and the NFL for comment, but did not immediately receive a response.

However, Gracie Hunt, the daughter of Chiefs CEO Clark Hunt, did weigh in on Butker’s commencement address during a recent appearance on Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends” with Steve Doocy and Will Cain.

Gracie Hunt in Colorado

Gracie Hunt, daughter of Kansas City Chiefs owner Clarke Hunt, looks on before a game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Denver Broncos at Empower Field at Mile High on October 29, 2023 in Denver, Colorado. (Dustin Bradford/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

She suggested that her mother staying at home played a key role in her growing into the person she is today.

“Well, I can only speak from my own experience, which is I’ve had the most incredible mom who had the ability to stay home and be with us as kids growing up. And I understand that there are many women out there who can’t make that decision. But for me and my life, I know it was really formative and in shaping me and my siblings into who we are,” she said.

But amid the reaction, demand for Butker’s Chiefs jersey seems to have spiked.

Harrison Butker kicks

Harrison Butker #7 of the Kansas City Chiefs watches his 28 yard field goal during the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers during Super Bowl LVIII at Allegiant Stadium on February 11, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

As of Thursday, Butker’s jersey appeared to be among the most in-demand fan gear on Chiefs star quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ jersey is also listed among the league’s bestselling jerseys.

Butker wore No. 87 in college when he kicked for the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. He currently wears jersey No. 7.

Butker’s speech at Benedictine was not the first time he pubically expressed his personal beliefs. He returned to his alma mater last year and offered the graduating class some advice.

“I’m not sure the root of this, but at least I can offer one controversial antidote that I believe will have a lasting impact for generations to come: get married and start a family,” Butker told Georgia Tech’s Class of 2023.

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