Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the The Daily Wire. The author of this post is Hank Berrien.
After multiple pitchers for the Tampa Bay Rays chose not to wear a rainbow-colored logo on their hats and jerseys on "Pride Night,"
citing their religious beliefs, a pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals mocked them on social media.
Jason Adam, Jalen Beeks, Brooks Raley, Jeffrey Springs and Ryan Thompson of the Rays decided they weren't comfortable wearing the LGBT-themed logo on Saturday night at the team's home gane against the Chicago White Sox.
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jack Flaherty ridiculed the players' decision, calling it an "absolute joke."
Adam stated, "A lot of it comes down to faith, to like a faith-based decision,"
the Tampa Bay Times reported. "So it's a hard decision. 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,"
"It's not judgmental,"
he concluded. "It's not looking down. It's just what we believe the lifestyle he's encouraged us to live, for our good, not to withhold. But again, we love these men and women, we care about them, and we want them to feel safe and welcome here."
"I'm proud of the fact we did this and so many of our players chose to wear the logo,"
Rays President Matt Silverman told The New York Times. "I'm also proud of the conversations we had during the run-up to this night and in the aftermath. That's a really good byproduct of this: to be able to actually have these conversations is really valuable and rare."
Rays manager Kevin Cash contended that the split among the players vis-à-vis the uniforms was not a problem, saying, "First and foremost, I think the organization has done a really good thing to have Pride Night's supporting our gay community to come out and have a nice night at the ballpark,"
Cash said. "Impressed that our players have had those conversions and we want to support our players that choose to wear or choose not to wear to the best of our capabilities."
In 2015, the Rays organization joined the New England Patriots and San Francisco Giants to sign an amicus brief filed to the Supreme Court in support of same-sex marriage.
"The brief points to the fact that there are 13 states currently that do not allow same-sex marriage and argues that 'inconsistent' marriage laws across states forces companies to spend time and money toward the administrative systems needed 'to differentiate treatment of otherwise indistinguishable employees based on the different marriage laws of the places where they live.'"
Sports Illustrated reported at the time.
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