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Corporations of perpetual capitulation

The Los Angeles Dodgers grovel before the sexual revolutionaries

Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers wears a rainbow logo on his hat on Pride Day at Oracle Park in San Francisco on June 11, 2022. Associated Press/Photo by Jeff Chiu

Corporations of perpetual capitulation

Unconditional surrenders usually require overwhelming military force, but all it took for the Los Angeles Dodgers to abandon the field was a bit of controversy with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. The white flag of capitulation now flies over Dodger Stadium.

Just in case you were wondering, the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are an LGBTQ activist group identified by the Los Angeles Times as “California’s most recognizable drag outfit.” The group describes itself as “a leading-edge order of queer and trans nuns.” You can pretty much use your imagination here, but picture men dressed like cartoonish Catholic nuns, wearing makeup and advocating for LGBTQ rights.

The controversy arose when the Dodgers were planning their tenth annual Pride Night and proposed to present the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence with the “Community Heroes Award.” A group known as CatholicVote registered protest that the Dodgers, representing good old American baseball, were proposing to honor a group that made fun of the Roman Catholic Church even as it flaunted the church’s moral teachings. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida wrote an open letter to Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, describing the group as “a group of gay and transgender drag performers that intentionally mocks and degrades Christians.” Seems about right.

The Dodgers responded to the controversy by stepping back from the plan to present the award to the activist group on Pride Night. A landslide of LGBTQ outrage came in the wake of that announcement and activist groups threatened to boycott Pride Night—a prospect that evidently frightened the Dodgers’ leadership into sheer panic.

Members of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence protest in front of the Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C, on April 28, 2015.

Members of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence protest in front of the Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C, on April 28, 2015. Associated Press/Photo by Jose Luis Magana

In short order the team re-invited the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence to Pride Night and reasserted the intention to present the Community Heroes Award to the group. But the announcement came with this rather classic statement of moral surrender and apology:

“After much thoughtful feedback from our diverse communities, honest conversations within the Los Angeles Dodgers organization and generous discussions with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, the Los Angeles Dodgers would like to offer our sincerest apologies to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, members of the LGBTQ+ community and their friends and families.”

Several years ago, Susan Wise Bauer described what she called the “art of the public grovel.” Successful groveling, she argued, required accepting humiliation and throwing yourself prostrate before the public, asking for forgiveness the way a sinner might walk the sawdust path and put his hand in the hands of an evangelist as the congregation sings “Just As I Am.” Bauer argued that Bill Clinton understood this truth, and saved his political hide. Ted Kennedy, on the other hand, refused to play this game and never resided in the White House.

The L.A. Dodgers went for the Bill Clinton strategy, but their capitulation was not to the American people, but to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Their apology was not an admission of breaking the historic moral code of civilization, but for (awkwardly and defensively) maintaining it, if even for just a matter of hours. The team’s humiliation is total and their message to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence is just embarrassing:

“We have asked the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence to take their place on the field at our 10th annual LGBTQ+ Pride Night.” Further: “We are pleased to share that they are agreed to share the gratitude of our collective communities for the lifesaving work they have done tirelessly for decades.”

Those who turn baseball into a burlesque now win, while those hoping to take the kids to a simple baseball game lose.

The Dodgers are (for now) the latest cultural institution or corporation to find itself in the vise between the sexual and gender ideologues, on the one hand, and those who still hold to moral sanity and biological reality, on the other. In our current context, this almost always means that the sane folks lose and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence win.

Those who turn baseball into a burlesque now win, while those hoping to take the kids to a simple baseball game lose. Christian morality is out and sexualized parodies of nuns are in.

This is the new reality, and our future is a tide wave of corporate capitulation. Welcome to the age of moral surrender. Corporate America doesn’t really fear the reaction of Christians in America. It’s the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence they fear. And, be sure of this, they are counting on the rest of us surrendering as well.

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R. Albert Mohler Jr.

Albert Mohler is president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Boyce College and editor of WORLD Opinions. He is also the host of The Briefing and Thinking in Public. He is the author of several books, including The Gathering Storm: Secularism, Culture, and the Church. He is the seminary’s Centennial Professor of Christian Thought and a minister, having served as pastor and staff minister of several Southern Baptist churches.

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