The Los Angeles Dodgers reversed course and re-invited a group known for its queer and drag membership to its Pride Night event after it was shocked at its last-minute exclusion.
The team announced the move Monday, saying the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence have agreed to appear during a game against San Francisco on June 16 at Dodger Stadium.
“The Los Angeles Dodgers would like to offer our sincere apologies to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and their friends and families,” the team said.
The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, founded in San Francisco in 1979, was expected to accept the night’s Community Hero Award.
In a statement on its homepage, the organization describes its mission: “We use humor and irreverent wit to expose the forces of bigotry, complacency and guilt that grip the human soul.”
On May 17, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, denounced the group’s inclusion, after the Dodgers rescinded its invitation. Rubio criticized the inclusion in a letter to Major League Baseball.
He said that the Sisters of Perpetual Indifference mocks Catholicism and encourages a “distortion” of the doctrines of Jesus.
The team apparently did not agree, but argued that the group’s presence would polarise. The move comes as aggressive right-wing protesters have targeted events known as “Drag Queen Story Hour” for threats and protests, and Republican-dominated legislatures in several states have passed anti-trans bills.
The team may not have expected the response.
The next day, LA Pride, which produces the city’s eponymous annual parade and festivities celebrating LGBTQ life and culture, kicked off Pride Night.
The Dodgers said the episode “provides an opportunity to use our platform to better educate ourselves, find ways to strengthen bonds, and support all of our fans who make up the diversity of the Dodgers family.” “
LA Pride did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and had not yet posted an official response to its social media platforms.
Joe Hollendner, CEO of the Los Angeles LGBT Center, said in a statement Monday that the team’s MEA impeachment was “a step in the right direction.”
“Last week’s debacle underscores the dangerous impact of political tactics by those who seek to fan the flames of anti-LGBTQ prejudice at a time when our rights are under attack,” he said. “We must continue to stand together.”