Eddie Vedder slams Harrison Butker for sexist commencement speech: 'People of quality do not fear equality'

"There's nothing more masculine than a strong man supporting a strong woman," the Pearl Jam frontman said.

Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder is taking shots at Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker for his controversial commencement address at Benedictine College.

During the band's Saturday concert in Las Vegas, the singer took a moment to praise their opening act, Deep See Diver — and swiftly pivoted to criticizing Butker's sexist speech. "That's some good men and good women making up a great band," Vedder said of Deep See Diver, according to fan video posted online. "The singer, Jessica, and the keyboard player, Patti, they must not have believed that 'diabolical lie' that women should take pride in taking a back seat to their man."

Last week, Butker drew criticism for his 20-minute speech at the private Catholic college, where he praised his wife for embracing her role as a "homemaker," railed against "dangerous gender ideologies," and urged men to "fight against the cultural emasculation of men."

<p>Jim Bennett/Getty; Cooper Neill/Getty</p> Eddie Vedder and Harrison Butker

Jim Bennett/Getty; Cooper Neill/Getty

Eddie Vedder and Harrison Butker

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Vedder became the latest to join the chorus of voices disagreeing with the athlete's misogynistic remarks, drawing cheers from the audience.

"I get that it could be for some people. There should be pride in homemaking, if you're a man or a woman. It's maybe one of the hardest jobs, and you should definitely take pride in it," Vedder said. "But you're going to benefit by giving up your dreams? I couldn't understand the logic, so I'm questioning it in public right now."

Vedder then took aim at Butker directly, telling the crowd, "The irony was that this football player — well, kicker… You see, the kicker doesn't have the pads because he doesn't tackle anybody or get tackled. But he started telling men, 'Don't forget to puff up your chest and be more masculine. Don't lose your masculinity.' The irony was that when he was saying that, he looked like such a fucking p---y."

Related: Whoopi Goldberg says Harrison Butker, Colin Kaepernick deserve equal respect for expressing views

Waiting for the applause to die down, Vedder added, "There's nothing more masculine than a strong man supporting a strong woman. People of quality do not fear equality."

Butker, a devout Catholic, used his speech to target the LGBTQIA+ community, denounce abortion rights, and criticize President Joe Biden. He also took a moment to address the female graduates directly, encouraging them to embrace motherhood.

"I can tell you that my beautiful wife, Isabelle, would be the first to say that her life truly started when she began living her vocation as a wife and as a mother," Butker said. "Isabelle's dream of having career might not have come true, but if you ask her today if she has any regrets on her decision, she would laugh out loud without hesitation and say, 'Heck no.'"

Vedder was certainly not alone in taking issue with Butker's remarks. GLAAD denounced the address, the NFL denied that Butker's views are shared by the organization, and an order of nuns affiliated with Benedictine College criticized the speech in a statement shared online, saying they "reject a narrow definition of what it means to be Catholic."

"Instead of promoting unity in our church, our nation, and the world, his comments seem to have fostered division,” the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica wrote on Facebook, adding that women educated by the nuns "have made a tremendous difference in the world in their roles as wives and mothers and through their God-given gifts in leadership, scholarship, and their careers."

Watch the video above for more from Vedder. 

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