Posted June 07, 2013

Former Ravens center Matt Birk explains why he declined invitation to White House

NFL
Retired Ravens center Matt Birk explained on Thursday his reason for declining an invitation to the White House. (George Gojkovich/Getty Images)

Retired Ravens center Matt Birk explained on Thursday his reason for declining an invitation to the White House. (George Gojkovich/Getty Images)

Retired Ravens center Matt Birk spoke out Thursday morning on Minnesota’s KFAN about his reason for declining an invitation from President Barack Obama to be at the White House during the team’s visit a day earlier.

Birk, a six-time Pro Bowler who was on the Ravens’ 2013 Super Bowl team, said he has “great respect for the office of the Presidency” but decided against going with the team on Wednesday as part of an annual NFL tradition for Super Bowl winners. Birk said he based his decision on a comment the president recently made in which he applauded Planned Parenthood, a leading health care provider of reproductive and sexual health:

“I wasn’t there. I would say this, I would say that I have great respect for the office of the Presidency but about five or six weeks ago, our president made a comment in a speech and he said, ‘God bless Planned Parenthood…’

Planned Parenthood performs about 330,000 abortions a year. I am Catholic, I am active in the Pro-Life movement and I just felt like I couldn’t deal with that. I couldn’t endorse that in any way…I’m very confused by [the President's] statement. For God to bless a place where they’re ending 330,000 lives a year? I just chose not to attend.”

Obama spoke to Planned Parenthood at the end of April, saying the organization has “a president who’s going to be right there with you,” and then ended his speech with the comments that Birk took issue with. Footage of Obama’s speech can be seen below:


683 comments
EmilioYmail
EmilioYmail

Birk did a great job in outing the organization responsible for 1 in every 4 killings of  unborn children in the USA, whatever other good  Planned Parenthood does for the community it will always be tainted by this horrible acts.

JasonElder
JasonElder

Just this discussion in general makes me glad I'm an Aethiest....religion, especially the catholic and muslim religions have been the cause of most of the important wars and conflicts throughout the history of our world as well as the basis for such screwed up views such as the one Matt Birk displayed. It's one thing to base your choice on 100% fact, it's another to hide behind your "Religion" or "Faith" and use it as your soapbox because you have no tact in dealing with issues. Hope you have to watch the season from the sidelines buddy.

gail89gail
gail89gail

There's a time and place for everything and I think this was not it for Birk.  As far as the majority of men who have been posting such trash and divisive comments, how putrid are you?  Shame, shame, shame.  So many haters, so little time. 

EarlMartyPrice
EarlMartyPrice

People tend to see the organzational as an abortion center, but they also are the largest provider of breast and vaginal exams to poor women in this country. This is important as we now hae the highest poverty statistics since the depression. He has a right to his decesion, but lets not make a big deal of it

land50man
land50man

Birk had every right to turn down visiting the white House. If you have a belief or stand that contradicts what the Administration supports...than follow your heart and your conscience.

Joe88
Joe88

I applaud Birk for taking a stand.  For all the pro-choice folks, at what point, exactly, does life begin?  Please explain how these two scenarios are different and should be treated differently by the law.  1)  Woman goes and gets an abortion - legal.  2)  Woman on her way to get an abortion gets hit by a drunk driver and the baby is killed - drunk driver will be charged with manslaughter.  Why is the baby in scenario 1 a choice and the baby in scenario 2 a person? 

DeNihilo
DeNihilo

@biasedsportsfan It doesn't appear anyone has even attempted to argue your point.  I think these conservatives just got gamed.  Calling yourself 'pro-life' is pure dishonest semantic manipulation which doesn't actually make anyone a better person for calling themselves such.

Dan1051
Dan1051

...and don't forget, BLACKS have many more abortions than any other race.    

Dan1051
Dan1051

I just hope that some day Obama's daughters choose to have abortions..... then we'll talk!

jleland42
jleland42

Birk is entitled to his opinion, but do you think he'll stop going to mass because he opposes pedophilia?

KayT.Williams
KayT.Williams

Everybody has their stance, but until you instantaniously grow a vagina it doesn't mean sh*t....

sithlorddarthkenyan
sithlorddarthkenyan

Liberal Democrats have killed more humans than Adolph Hitler did. Period.

DavidSchimelpfenig
DavidSchimelpfenig

Obama is a treasonous tyrant who thinks he is God.  God would never bless evil genocidal racists like Planned Parenthood.   They should do a government study on if liberalism is a genetic disorder or a mental disease.

testmaterials12
testmaterials12

Oh is he speaking of the same Catholics whose priest consistently molest little boys or the same Catholics that have waged War against nations for centuries and spilled countless lives in pursuit of their beliefs? It's easy for people like Birk to pick and choose what moral statutes to follow. I am Christian too but I've put my beliefs in perspective. FYI, Birk everyone in America don't share your beliefs and just b/c you're attaching your religious beliefs to your moral convictions doesn't make your a pillar of morality either. How about you spend more time seeking justice for the countless molested boys your Catholic priests have defiled and converted into hatemongers like the Sandy Hook killer. I guess it's ok for a man to take advantage of boy but it's not ok for a woman to have a choice over whether she's ready to give a child the love and care that it needs. I wouldn't have let your redneck, neck-bone eating, confederate flag toting Hillbilly a$$ in the White House to begin with.

Knarf
Knarf

@JasonElder People will always be people and people make mistakes, but God is always perfect.  Jesus never promoted violence, people did for the sake of "pride."  When Jesus was arrested to get beat up and crucified, Peter cut off one of the arresting guard's ear.  Jesus told Peter that is not God's way and he repaired the guard's ear and healed it and then he was taken away to be condemned.  So people like you have no idea of what you are talking about  because you are one of those people who just go by "hear-say" and are too lazy to look into the facts yourself, it's just easier that way.  And also because you already have made the choice to be your own God, you are your own number 1 person.  While God in the other hand promotes everyone to treat each other the way you would want to be treated.   And how dare you compare Christ with Islam.  Jesus is for real and has been confirmed by Historians that he did die and rose from the dead so for whoever believes in him, will also have eternal life.  If all that is a lie, then Historians would never use Christ's name to divide time.  For example, 2014 B.C and 2013 A.D.  BC meaning 2014 Before Christ and 2013 A.D as in "Anno Domini" in Latin meaning the year of our Lord.  You are free to not follow him, but don't expect God to rescue you when your soul gets taken away by Demons and torture you forever with no hope in coming back when you pass away.  Jesus is the way, the truth and the light.  John 14:6.

ModernThrowback
ModernThrowback

@land50man I like Matt Birk a lot, but his decision here is proof that you can be both smart and culturally closeted at the same time. Anyone who thinks there's is the only one "truth" is actually very far from it.

glunzkarenbeth
glunzkarenbeth

@EdSchoberline 

I had my first giggle this morning.  Thank you.  I sure miss this man and his wit.  I was raised fanatically Catholic by a drunken mom.  She actually knew very little about the tenets of the church yet believed the hype that it was the one true church.  I feel compassion for this young man who in my perspective is programmed to believe he and the Catholic church is truth.  Wouldn't he have been better served going to the white house and talking with President Obama quietly.  Another comment lauded the other services of Planned Parenthood which in my view must be considered.  I am pro-choice rather than pro-life. For me, that is what the USA is about...freedom of choice.  Again, thank you Ed for providing a great perspective from a great comedian.  

TommieStyles
TommieStyles

@Dan1051Well, I guess that means that WHITES love killing actual people and saving fetuses. That seems right, right? 


(Dan, your so off base, your comment is hilarious and pathetic at the same time. Try being less blatantly racist next time, or at least do some research.....but I think I'm talking way above your head now!)

Dan1051
Dan1051

@jleland42  Possibly!   But then, unless he knows that HIS priest is a pedophile, or favors it, I suspect he will continue to attend his church, and follow his faith.   (Not all priests are pedophiles...  Many are alcoholics and "cheaters", but that is another issue...)

John-Allen
John-Allen

@KayT.Williams I beg to differ. It takes both a man and a woman to have a baby. A man is more than just a sperm donor and ATM. Your comment is offensive and marginalizes the role of the man in a child's life. Just because you have a vagina doesn't give you sole authority over the future a life that takes TWO to create. Both the man and woman are responsible for creating a pregnancy and unwanted pregnancies are often the outcome when adequate preventative measures were not taken. If a woman can have an abortion simply because she doesn't "want" to go through with the pregnancy, why can a man not ask for the same escape of responsibility? Many men dread the financial responsibility of fatherhood, where is their abort button? Women who think that their vagina gives them sole authority over the life of a child repulse me, because their view is so blatantly self-centered, when it should be centered on obtaining a positive outcome for the newly created life. Ultimately that's the problem with people today, they are increasingly only concerned about themselves, looking for any escape from responsibilities that might hinder their selfish indulgence in pleasure. Society has used science to eliminate consequences, and a world with no concept of consequence is a dangerous place.

KayT.Williams
KayT.Williams

@DavidSchimelpfenig  And I'm sure you have a direct line to Jesus who gave you some sort of authority to pass judgement, right? You, gun totting racist teabag conservative scum buckets really have some nerve.....

luvdogos
luvdogos

@testmaterials12 Amazing! Birk is brave to make a statement about his personal belief on abortion, not be judged along with what some priest have done. I applaud him and wish more would stand up against the true hypocritical haters. For people to write the horrible statements I am reading here demonstrates how evil people are.They are angry with a person who believes in protecting the life and providing a voice the most innocent and this constitutes the evil name calling??? I see more and more everyday a country that is misguided and has no leadership. BIRK YOU ARE A LEADER!!!!

Elmerszcz
Elmerszcz

@testmaterials12What basis do you use to compare predator priests with this man’s belief? How do you justify using sick behavior as the gauge with which you judge another person? I can answer the question for you; your illogical liberal mouth. The tongue kills without drawing blood. You more than likely preach acceptance of all races yet openly judge another for their belief. “Hypocrite attacks Christian” should have been the title of your disgusting comment. If you read this reply I’ll bet you’ll attack me with filth and sarcasm because that, Mr., is all you have.

Dan1051
Dan1051

@TommieStyles @Dan1051 Speaking of being pathetic.... WOW!   what in my comment indicates that I favor killing "actual people, and saving fetuses"?    This article and issue is about ABORTIONS for the sake of birth control.  The law has ALWAYS allowed for medically necessitated abortions, in cases where the mother would dies otherwise.  THIS issue is about killing the unborn for the purposes of "birth control".... Get YOUR head out of the sand...  And, CHECK THE STATISTICS, blacks do have far more (per capita) than any other race.  If being factual is being "racist" to you, then I am..... But then, true "racists" can't handle the truth...   Have a nice day!

land50man
land50man

@KayT.Williams@DavidSchimelpfenig We do have nerve...it's called truth. For you to classify TeaParty people as racist says something about you. You follow the media, but never check things out for yourself. Just because we do not agree with Obama, t has nothing to do with color. You are the one with the paintbrush lady. Birk followed his conscience and God will bless him for that. To praise abortion is to praise murder. End of story.

KayT.Williams
KayT.Williams

@Elmerszcz @testmaterials12  I believe he is saying one wrong is no worse than another. I'm sure this player doesn't condone or agree with the priests in his faith who molest children or the act of covering it up by the church, but that probably never stopped him from going to worship with them or participating in mass. At the very essence of his so called moral stance against the President supporting a woman's right to choose in a free country he is being more hippocritiacal than moral...

EarlMartyPrice
EarlMartyPrice

@Dan1051 @TommieStyles I do not think you are racist at all. Just prejudiced, and without real knowledge of the black community, as you see it as monolithic...better check and make sure you don't have one of those tainted drops of blood

had2saysomethin
had2saysomethin

@Dan1051 @TommieStyles the fact that you went way oet of your way to say blacks have more abortions is a good reason to assume you are another pathetic racist!!

saailer
saailer

@the_beer_ghost @Elmerszcz @testmaterials12 Elmer was my Grandfathers name...Popular in the late 1800's...Angry? The last thing in the world is that I'm angry...

I state my belief that abortion is a sin; and from this you somehow conclude I'm angry? The sum total of your comment is to make fun of someone's name only to discover it was used to pay tribute too their Grandfather...And your first name is what; beer?

saailer
saailer

@MattSewell @Elmerszcz @KayT.Williams @testmaterials12 I have already answered when life begins...when do you believe life begins? I accept those things I can not change and change those things that I can; asking god for wisdom to know the difference...Did you not read my previous comment ; I will not attempt to convince otherwise? I spread the WORD...Please define the difference, in your mind, between spread and cram? Tolerance is acceptance and I do not accept abortion...My belief...I should love those that rape children? Seems to me your cramming and am not accepting of my beliefs...You expound on what Jesus would want; love all God' children...And where in the Bible is that found? Jesus teaches how to tell the difference...i will continue to spread the word.Mr. Sewell...Elmer was my grandfathers name

MattSewell
MattSewell

@Elmerszcz @KayT.Williams @testmaterials12  

You need to answer when life begins. It does not start at conception. If it did that child would be able to survive outside of the womb, without the need for machines. And I am not including the need to be cleaned, fed, clothed, and have a roof over its head as survive. I'm talking about basics that life needs. A heart to pump blood, lungs to breathe oxygen. The ability to move, make noise, and see. Abortion isn't murder. And I gotta say I love the tolerance you display, as a southern baptist, you should love all of your gods children. Jesus would rather you accept them for who they are and tell the word. Jesus would rather you not cram it down peoples throats. Just state your beliefs then be accepting that others don't follow them. 

snefferson
snefferson

KayTWilliams your a racist B****. how much do you weigh? You're gross

Elmerszcz
Elmerszcz

@KayT.Williams@Elmerszcz@testmaterials12 Kay: I agree with the first part of your comment...However the very essence of choice is, in my belief, is given by God to all humans...It is free will...My belief as a Southern Baptist is that abortion is murder and a moral decision reached via free will...A free country has nothing to do with it...Whomever supports abortion commits the same sin...I leave judgment to God since all humans sin...I will not attempt to convince a non-believer otherwise...It would be far easier to teach algebra to a cat...I would only express my belief...One can not condone bad behavior by pointing at other bad behavior...Thank you for your response.