For the third consecutive year, the United Soccer Coaches organization is sponsoring a “Play with Pride” week. During the week of September 16-22, club, high school and college teams across the United States are encouraged to wear rainbow laces in their cleats to show support for athletes and coaches of all sexual orientations and gender identities.
According to their website, United Soccer Coaches is the “world’s largest soccer coaches’ organization that serves members at every level of the game.” Their website offers a “Play with Pride” toolkit that includes an ordering portal for the rainbow laces, tips for promoting the PWP event and a playbook to help coaches talk to their teams about “Play with Pride” week.
“Not everyone agrees with the causes represented by the LGBT rainbow,” said Jennifer Bryson, founder of Let’s All Play, an organization that works to get politics out of sports. FIFA, the international governing body for soccer, has a rule that states: “Equipment must not have any political, religious or personal slogans, statements or images” (Law 04.5).
Bryson has started a petition that challenges FIFA to enforce its own rules against political symbols, such as the LGBT rainbow, on soccer uniforms or field equipment. She noted there have been examples of “players who have declined to wear the LGBT rainbow in international and league play who have been harassed and now risk being disadvantaged in their careers.”
One prominent example is Jaelene Hinkle, a Christian professional soccer player. In June 2017, Hinkle was called up to play on the United States Women’s National Team. When she discovered that the US team was going to require players to wear an LGBT rainbow on their uniforms for LGBTQ Pride Month, she declined to play.
Hinkle told CBN News that after days of prayer on the matter, she just didn’t believe God wanted her to wear a gay pride jersey. “I felt so convicted in my spirit that it wasn’t my job to wear this jersey,” Hinkle said. “I gave myself three days to seek and pray and determine what He was asking me to do in the situation.”
Even through she’s one of the best defenders in the nation, Hinkle wasn’t invited to play with the US women’s soccer team that won the World Cup this past summer. And she was also subjected to ridicule from other National Team members who called her intolerant and homophobic.
If your child plays soccer, be aware that next week they may be asked to participate in Play with Pride week. “There is no millimeter of territory that the Left will leave untouched until everyone affirms its agenda,” warns Bryson. Next week it’s all about shoelaces.
We know from reading in 2 Peter 3:3 that in the last days may scoffers will arise and follow their own evil desires. Pray for godly parents to rise up and teach their children biblical truths. And pray for innocent children to be protected from the radical LGBTQ agenda.