The Los Angeles Dodgers have somehow been occupying national headlines leading up to Dodger Stadium's Pride Night on June 16, which will be the 10th annual event highlighting folks and groups in the LGBTQ+ community. What was supposed to be a beautiful night is now a controversy.
When the Dodgers sent out their invitations to the LGBTQ+ groups they wanted to attend, the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence were among them. Per their website, here's what you need to know about them in case you're unfamiliar:
"The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence® are a leading-edge Order of queer and trans nuns. We believe all people have a right to express their unique joy and beauty.- Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence
Since our first appearance in San Francisco on Easter Sunday, 1979, the Sisters have devoted ourselves to community service, ministry and outreach to those on the edges, and to promoting human rights, respect for diversity and spiritual enlightenment.
We use humor and irreverent wit to expose the forces of bigotry, complacency and guilt that chain the human spirit."
Apparently, what the group stands for is offensive to the Catholic community, which caused a national stir upon learning the Sisters were invited to the Dodgers' Pride Night. It even went as far as Florida senator Marco Rubio dedicating his very valuable time to pen a letter to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred in an effort to dissuade the Dodgers from hosting the Sisters.
And it worked! The Dodgers uninvited the Sisters, and then caused an uproar in the opposite direction. That chain reaction resulted in a number of organizations, most notably LA Pride,voicing their opposition and threatening not to participate in the team's Pride Night event if the Sisters were excluded. The LA Times penned an op-ed blasting the Dodgers for not possessing a "backbone."
So what happened next? You guessed it!
The Sisters have been invited back, and the Catholic community isn't happy about it again. And now they're the ones calling the Dodgers cowards. What a sad state of affairs we're currently mired in when you're enraging someone out there in a simple attempt to host an evening of inclusion. The Sisters are labeled as "anti-Catholic" by their detractors but ... one could argue that's subjective. And the same people upset about the Sisters' inclusion are the ones that typically yell "free speech" in the face of their critics.
Round and round we go.
Perhaps the point Rubio and various Catholic groups are missing is that this is a night to celebrate the LBGTQ+ community -- it's not one to preserve the ideals of Catholicism. And we're pretty sure Julio Urías isn't up in arms about this like some are suggesting on social media.
You're free to attend or not attend. That's the beauty of American culture. And on June 16, every person in opposition of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence can protest by not giving the Dodgers their money or continuing to be outspoken on the issue.
But they're not going to change the inherent meaning and disrupt the ethos of Pride Night ... assuming the Dodgers don't rescind their re-invitation.