Corporate WATCHBy Joe Schaeffer
With football season underway, baseball's post-season approaching and hockey and basketball just around the corner, now would seem a good time to review how big-time sports is being used to promote a radical leftist social agenda. This has been most obviously on display in recent years via the push to advance so-called "transgender" athletes in high school and college sports. Sadly, established professional sports leagues are eagerly supporting this cultural Marxist subversion of youth athletics.
Athlete Ally is an organization committed to "LGBTQ inclusion" in sports. "We change sports policy," the group openly boasts. "In 2017, we launched an ongoing campaign demanding that World Rugby adopt transgender-inclusive policies," the organization states on its website. Like so many pro-transgender groups, Athlete Ally focuses on youth outreach, in this case high school and college sports. "In 2017, we launched the Athletic Equality Index (AEI) to measure LGBTQ inclusion policies and practices in the NCAA’s Power Five conferences," the group states. "With plans to update the AEI every year and add 90 additional schools in 2018, the AEI provides an invaluable baseline so we can continue to push for LGBTQ inclusive policies at all colleges and universities across the nation." The group's "invite a speaker" form also has an option for a K-12 audience.
Athlete Ally lists numerous well-known corporate brands as "supporters," including the NBA and WNBA and Major League Soccer. The NBA's Brooklyn Nets and sports apparel giants Adidas and Under Armour are also backers, as are notable companies such as Citi, Gatorade, MillerCoors and NBCUniversal. The Arcus Foundation, a philanthropic venture founded by homosexual billionaire Jon Stryker that champions transgender rights, is also a donor.
The Arcus Foundation is also a "partner" of the pro-homosexual youth You Can Play Project, which was started up by longtime NHL executive Brian Burke and has especially close ties with professional and amateur hockey. "In April 2013, the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players’ Association announced a historic partnership with the You Can Play Project that formalized and advanced their long-standing commitment to make the NHL the most inclusive professional sports league in the world," the group touts on its website.
Other leagues listed as partners include Major League Soccer, the Canadian Football League and college sports conferences the America East Conference and the North Atlantic Conference. The Sporting News is also included as a partner. "Through the partnership [with the magazine], LGBT and allied athletes now have a new platform to share their stories and highlight issues affecting the LGBT community within the world of sports," You Can Play states. The organization is flat-out declaring that it has a major sports publication in its pocket as a propaganda tool for the homosexual agenda.
A "Basics" guide presented by You Can Play describes the group's efforts to reach schoolchildren. "In the United States, 50% of students in grades 6-12 who are LGBT reported being harassed or bullied in P.E. or gym class," the guide reads. "74% of transgender high school students reported being verbally harassed and 34% reported being physically harassed or assaulted."
You Can Play works with junior hockey teams to further target teens. The Ontario Hockey League's Hamilton Bulldogs are among the squads that have hosted a Pride Night along with You Can Play. Players as young as 16 years of age skate in the OHL.
Members of the group's "Advisory Board" include ESPN anchor John Buccigross, Golden State Warriors President Rick Welts and San Jose Sharks player Tommy Wingels.
In June the NHL boasted of its work with You Can Play on supporting Pride Month in hockey. The league's press release highlighted its efforts to help a transgender 15-year-old play the sport. "Elliott Govaars – how 15-year old Elliott, who was playing for the Junior Sharks girls hockey team, found a support network with his teammates as he began his transition to becoming a boy, also featuring transgender activist Harrison Browne," read the release of "stories" being told by the NHL in June.
After the NHL, no major sports league has been as enthusiastic in embracing the transgender agenda than the NBA. League commissioner Adam Silver was seen marching and waving a rainbow flag at a New York City homosexual rights parade in 2017. The NBA has partnered with GLSEN, a notorious pro-homosexual organization aimed at children that was founded by Kevin Jennings. Former president Barack Obama caused a scandal in 2009 when he appointed Jennings to be head of the Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools. This despite the fact that Jennings had admitted to not reporting the sexual abuse of a 15-year-old boy by an older man during his time as a teacher.
GLSEN specifically promotes "transgender inclusion in high school athletics." After assuring that transgender kids get to play by whatever gender they may want to pretend to be, GLSEN demands strict compliance with all that that entails. "Transgender student athletes, once approved for play, have the right to access the same facilities as their teammates," the organization declares. "This includes access to locker rooms, restrooms, hotel rooms, etc. The student should also have access to uniforms that are in line with their gender identity and should be called by the proper name and pronouns."
GLSEN doesn't only work with the NBA. The NFL's Minnesota Vikings invited the organization's Executive Director Eliza Byard to speak at the team's "Vikings LGBTQ Summit" in 2018. Also represented was You Can Play Project co-founder Brian Kitts.
The Vikings did not even attempt to hide the fact that big-time sports is being used as a means for radical social change in America today. In a tweet sent out on the team's official Twitter account, the Vikings quoted transgender activist Chris Mosier, who said: "Visibility is a powerful tool for social change and sport is a vehicle to achieve that mission."
Lest we forget Major League Baseball, it appears it too is falling into line with the fierce social agenda. The St. Louis Cardinals and Toronto Blue Jays have had transgender activists throw out the first pitch before games, every team except the New York Yankees (don't expect them to hold out much longer) has hosted a Pride Night, and the league has anointed a former homosexual player as its official Ambassador of Inclusion.
As we all know, pro sports lost its innocence some time ago, if it ever had it. But surely it is more than a bit disconcerting to see these powerful and influential leagues work with organizations dedicated to warping the minds of America's children on gender and sexuality issues. When you are "supporting your team" with your time and money, you are also supporting radical groups that seek to twist the character-building elements of sports into something truly malignant to our nation's youth. Something to think about as the great sports buffet enters high gear this fall.
Joe Schaeffer is the former Managing Editor of The Washington Times National Weekly Edition. His columns appear at LibertyNation.com, WorldTribune.com, and FreePressInternational.org.
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