This is the article that appeared in the June 2024 edition of Catalyst, our monthly journal. The date that prints out reflects the day that it was uploaded to our website. For a more accurate date of when the article was first published, check out the news release, here.

Harrison Butker, the phenomenal kicker for the Kansas City Chiefs, gave a commencement address at Benedictine College in Kansas on May 11 that espoused traditional Catholic values. The practicing Catholic was criticized by the NFL, slammed on social media and was the subject of a petition.

The attack had three targets: Butker, Benedictine College and Catholicism. Make no mistake, the war on Butker was driven by anti-Catholicism.

Butker was condemned for his remarks about women, abortion, President Biden, Gay Pride Month, gender ideology, and the emasculation of men. Those who signed the petition didn’t want to debate him—they wanted him fired. “We call upon the Kansas City Chiefs management to dismiss Harrison Butker immediately for his inappropriate conduct.”

Bill Donohue responded by saying, “Spoken like true fascists. Moreover, they are plain dumb: they don’t know the difference between speech and conduct.”

Most of the vitriol aimed at Butker was about his comments praising moms who elect to work at home taking care of their children. He noted how blessed he is to have a wife who embraces “one of the most important titles of all: homemaker.”

Butker actually spoke for most moms.

In a Gallup poll released in 2019, 50 percent of women with children under age 18 said they would prefer to stay at home; 45 percent disagreed.
Butker spoke the truth about abortion, IVF, surrogacy and euthanasia, referring to them as stemming from “the pervasiveness of disorder.” But to those who like abortion, this was grounds to fire him.

Butker referenced Biden when he took him to task for making the sign of the cross during a pro-abortion rally. He was also right to call attention to the “deadly sins” associated with Pride month. His reference to “dangerous gender ideologies” was understated—we are dealing with a child abuse crisis.

Bigotry was the driving force behind these attacks. It was Butker’s unabashed defense of Catholic moral theology that set his critics off.

The Associated Press let the cat out of the bag. It unleashed a string of red flags about Benedictine College being “part of a constellation of conservative Catholic colleges that tout their adherence to church teachings and practice—part of a larger conservative movement in parts of the U.S. Catholic Church.”

This comes on the heels of an AP story sounding the alarms about the growth of orthodox Catholicism.

We were happy to come to Butker’s defense. We did so with greater effect than any other Catholic organization in the nation. We had a list of email subscribers contact Stephen D. Minnis, president of Benedictine College, to show their support for him and for Butker.

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