Whoopi Goldberg on Harrison Butker remarks: ‘These are his beliefs and he’s welcome to them’

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“The View” co-host Whoopi Goldberg defended Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker, who is under fire for suggesting women should prioritize being a homemaker over their career ambitions.

“These are his beliefs and he’s welcome to them,” Goldberg said during an episode of “The View” Thursday, adding “I don’t have to believe them. Right? I don’t have to accept them.”

Butker, 28, recently delivered a controversial commencement speech to Benedictine College — a Catholic liberal arts school in Kansas — in which he criticized Pride month, President Biden, abortion and women in the workforce.

He is now facing widespread criticism across social media and a petition urging for his dismissal has amassed over 115,00 signatures as of Thursday.

Goldberg compared the controversy to former San Franisco Colin Kaepernick, who faced backlash for kneeling during the national anthem starting in 2016 to raise awareness about police brutality and racial inequality in the U.S.

“The ladies that were sitting in that audience do not have to accept them the same way,” she said. “We want respect when Colin Kaepernick takes a knee, right? We want to give respect to people whose ideas are different from ours.”

“The View” co-host Sara Haines said she does not want people’s views to be “shut down” for the sake of free speech but disagreed with Goldberg’s comparison to the Kaepernick situation.

“Colin Kaepernick was standing up for the rights of many and saying in a social justice moment, ‘this is a reminder that we’re not there yet,’” Haines said. “What this man is doing is not just a devout Catholic, this is someone who’s practicing something called the traditional Latin Mass, which is a divergent from the majority of Catholics. It’s being compared to being quote, ‘an extremist,’ like some religions in the Middle East and Asia. So, this is a very extreme religion.”

Haines argued Butker is “not walking with Jesus” by using his religious to oppress” people.

Goldberg interjected, “But if this is his belief system. If there are many Catholics who are staunch this way…” to which Haines interjected, noting a “small percentage” fall under the Traditional Latin Mass.

The Chiefs kicker gained the most attention for his remarks about women choosing to pursue a career.

“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 the stage and are thinking about all the promotions and titles you’re going to get in your career?” 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,” he added.

He later shared the story of how his wife who chose the “vocation” of being his partner and a mother to their children.

“I say all of this to you because I’ve seen it firsthand … how much happier someone can be when they disregard the outside noise and move closer and closer to God’s will in their life,” the NFL player said.

The Los Angeles Chargers appeared to mock Butker, posting a three-and-half-minute Sims-like video on social media that took swipes at each of their NFL opponents and some of their well-known players.

The National Football League also seems to be distancing itself from the kicker’s remarks.

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

Butker also used his speech last week to wage a series of attacks against Biden, criticizing the leader’s policies on abortion, gender ideology and the COVID-19 pandemic.

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