Butker’s commencement speech echoes MacArthur and other male supremacists

This article originally appeared at Baptist News Global on May 15, 2024.

With Pride Month looming over the horizon and women graduating from college, Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker decided to attack “dangerous gender ideologies” when he gave the commencement address at Benedictine College.

Butker, an outspoken conservative Catholic, believes the gender ideologies he is concerned about go beyond simply being dangerous. He thinks they’re caused by demons targeting women.

“I think it is you, the women, who have had the most diabolic lies told to you,” he told graduates of the Catholic school in Atchison, Kan., who had paid about $26,000 per year to get a four-year degree.

Given that the occasion was a college graduation, one might assume the dangerous, diabolic gender ideologies would be messages people tell women that keep women down, disempowered or discouraged. But that’s not what Butker had in mind. Instead, his concern was that women are being too empowered.

“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 said.

“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.”

Then Butker made it personal: “I can tell you that my beautiful wife, Isabelle, would be the first to say her life truly started when she started living her vocation as a wife and as a mother. I’m on this stage today, able to be the man that I am, because I have a wife who leans into her vocation.”

His throat began to constrict as he started choking up. “I’m beyond blessed with the many talents God has given me, but it cannot be overstated that all my success is made possible because a girl I met in band class back in middle school would convert to the faith, become my wife and embrace one of the most important titles of all: Homemaker.”

Apparently, Butler’s wife wasn’t truly living until she met and married him. Never mind her childhood, apparent love of music or personal perspective on the world. From Butker’s view, his wife’s life didn’t start until she agreed with his religion, became his wife and looked after his home. In other words, her entire existence is in reference to him.

‘Pervasiveness of disorder’

Many of the news stories covering Butker’s speech have interpreted it as an attack on President Joe Biden, LGBTQ people and women, as if these are three separate topics.

But if you pay close attention, you’ll notice how all three topics are connected.

“While COVID might have played a large role throughout your formative years, it is not unique,” Butker 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.”

Sure, talk about “bad policies and poor leadership” are likely an attack on Biden.

Also, going after abortion, IVF and surrogacy paired with his words about women being homemakers is going after women.

And “degenerate cultural values” paired with “dangerous gender ideologies” is a dog whistle for conservatives who oppose LGBTQ people.

But to Butker, these three issues are rooted in a “pervasiveness of disorder.”

So the question we should ask is: What do conservatives like Butker mean by an order as it relates to gender?

Harrison Butker #7 of the Kansas City Chiefs warms up prior to Super Bowl LVIII against the San Francisco 49ers at Allegiant Stadium on February 11, 2024, in Las Vegas,. (Photo by Perry Knotts/Getty Images)

The created order

For them, ordering genders is the fundamental nature of the universe.

John MacArthur preaches at Grace Community Church on Sunday, Aug. 16, in defiance of a court order on public health.

Consider the teaching of John MacArthur, a pastor who, like Butker, opposed COVID precautions and obsession with gender orders: “Authority and submission pervade the whole universe. In the relationship between man and man, there is authority and submission. In the relationship with man and God, there is authority and submission. In the relationship between God and God, there is authority and submission. The entire universe is pervaded by this concept. And what is new here is not that the wife is to be subject to her husband. That isn’t new, because the Old Testament taught that. What is new is the vastness, the scope of this principle. That it absolutely pervades everything.”

Continue reading at Baptist News Global.

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