Whoopi Goldberg Respects Harrison Butker Stating His Beliefs During Commencement Speech

On The View‘s May 16 episode, Whoopi Goldberg defended Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker’s right to express his views during a recent commencement speech at Benedictine College.

Despite Butker’s controversial remarks on topics like abortion, euthanasia, IVF, surrogacy, and the LGBTQ community sparking backlash, Goldberg firmly believes in upholding free speech.

“I like when people say what they need to say,” Goldberg said. “…He’s at a Catholic college; he’s a staunch Catholic. These are his beliefs and he’s welcome to them. I don’t have to believe them, I don’t have to accept them, the ladies that were sitting in that audience do not have to accept them.”

Goldberg drew a parallel to the respect afforded to Colin Kaepernick’s protests. “We want to give respect to people whose ideas are different from ours…We don’t want to be those people…to take away people’s right to say how they feel.”

While co-host Sara Haines disagreed with Butker’s remarks, she echoed Goldberg’s sentiment.

“In the spirit of freedom of speech, I don’t want people shut down or fired for things they’re willing to say,” she said, referring to calls for Butker’s removal from the Chiefs. However, Haines diverged from Goldberg’s Kaepernick comparison. “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.” She asserted her perspective as a Christian and described Butker’s gesture as cult-like and “divergent from the majority of Catholics.”

Sunny Hostin and panelist Alyssa Farah Griffin disapproved of the athlete’s LGBTQ comments. However, Goldberg reiterated, “When you say to somebody, ‘I don’t like what you said, and so I’m going to get your job taken away because you disagree with me,’ for me, that’s an issue. It happens to us all the time.”

Amid the controversy, the NFL released a statement distancing itself from Butker’s remarks, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “His views are not those of the NFL as an organization,” said Jonathan Beane, the league’s senior VP and chief diversity and inclusion officer. He clarified that the league is “steadfast” in its commitment to inclusion.

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