All they wanted to do was express gratitude for Women’s History Month, but the Toronto Raptors missed the mark with fans. March 1 ushered in a new month and a new celebratory season. The Raptors shared a brief, 13-second video highlighting WHM, but it quickly fell flat. Players were asked, “Beyoncé said girls run the world. Why do you think that’s true?” This is where things took a turn.
Malachi Flynn answered, “They are the only ones that can procreate.” Precious Achiuwa added, “They birth everybody.” The clip concludes after Scottie Barnes chimes in with, “All women are great because they’re all queens.” Viewers took to social media to complain that the video seemed awkward while highlighting that not all women can give birth and procreate.
The Video Disappears
The video was supposed to be empowering, but that didn’t translate for the public. It didn’t take long for the clip to mysteriously vanish from the Raptors’ socials, but it was too late; people were already firing off hot takes after screen recording the post. “In case you were worried no sports team would completely bungle their Women’s Empowerment Month goodwill this year,” one person tweeted in the video’s caption. “Here’s an already-deleted video from the Toronto Raptors. Speechless.”
LGBTQIA+ allies were also upset because it was stated by the players that only women can have children. Transgender equality advocates said that women weren’t the only ones who could become pregnant, prompting another fiery debate online. Later, the Toronto Raptors issued an apology via CTV News. “We’re an organization that prides itself on doing the right thing when it comes to inclusion and representation, and we made a mistake yesterday.”
Supporters Come To Team’s Defense
Still, despite deciding to take down the video, the Raptors had plenty of supporters in their corner. As podcast hosts were in a flurry to jump on a microphone and discuss the controversy, others questioned why this was an issue. The topic of transgender rights has caused a divide, and online, the Raptors are being defended. Check out the clip from the Toronto Raptors above, and let us know if you think it’s controversial.