ESPN’s Sarah Spain this week slammed the handful of MLB players who refused to wear rainbow-colored pride night logos on their uniform as “bigoted,” and mocked religious reservations as “BS,” or bulls***.
At least five Tampa Bay Rays players, including pitchers Jason Adam, Jalen Beeks, Brooks Raley, Jeffrey Springs, and Ryan Thompson, refused to wear the pride-themed logo on their person, according to a report from the Tampa Bay Times.
“‘Pride’ is about inclusion, so you don’t love them or you don’t welcome them if you’re not willing to wear the patch,” Spain claimed on ESPN airwaves.
The host then seemed to target pitcher Jason Adam for citing his faith to opt-out of the logo.
“Calling it a ‘lifestyle’ reveals to me that you’ve done not even a modicum of research or understanding on this topic,” Spain said, adding “what tends to happen when a privileged class isn’t affected by things.”
“This is not just about baseball,” she continued. “That religious exemption BS (bulls***) which is used in sport and otherwise also allows for people to be denied health care, jobs, apartments, children, prescriptions, all sorts of rights.”
“We have to stop tiptoeing around it because we’re trying to protect people who are trying to be bigoted from asking for them to be exempt from it, when the very people that they are bigoted against are suffering the consequences,” Spain closed her rant.
Adam said his decision was a difficult one and cited his faith.
“It’s a hard decision,” the pitcher said. “Because ultimately we all said what we want is them to know that all are welcome and loved here. But when we put it on our bodies, I think a lot of guys decided that it’s just a lifestyle that maybe — not that they look down on anybody or think differently — it’s just that maybe we don’t want to encourage it if we believe in Jesus, who’s encouraged us to live a lifestyle that would abstain from that behavior, just like (Jesus) encourages me as a heterosexual male to abstain from sex outside of the confines of marriage. It’s no different.”
David Dennis Jr., on ESPN’s “Around the Horn” alongside Spain, deemed the logo issue a distraction but urged people to speak out about alleged injustices like the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Of course, there is no “Don’t Say Gay” legislation.
But Dennis was likely referring to Florida’s parental rights legislation that bars any type of sexual or gender identity instruction from being taught to students in kindergarten up to third grade.
WATCH (relevant comments begin around the 15-minute mark):