- Philadelphia Union captain Alejandro Bedoya grabbed an on-field microphone and demanded that Congress act on gun violence after scoring in the opening minutes of Sunday’s match against D.C. United.
- Bedoya’s call to action received support from his coach, his team, and his fans in the wake of two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio left 29 people dead over the weekend.
- It’s not the first time Bedoya has spoken out against gun violence, as he was raised near Parkland, Florida, where 17 students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were killed in a mass shooting in February 2018.
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Philadelphia Union captain Alejandro Bedoya made a passionate call to action on Sunday during his team’s match in Washington against D.C. United.
After scoring just three minutes into the game, Bedoya ran to the field microphone near the corner flag, picking it up and demanding that Congress act on gun violence. “Hey Congress, do something, now!” Bedoya said. “End gun violence! Let’s go!”
Philadelphia Union soccer player Alejandro Bedoya scores a goal in tonight's game against D.C. United, runs over to a field microphone and shouts, "Congress, do something now. End gun violence."
Via FS1 pic.twitter.com/7WH4PA08cs
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 5, 2019
Bedoya’s comment came just hours after two deadly attacks in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, killed 29 people.
While Bedoya’s comments weren’t audible to fans in attendance at the game, they came through over the telecast on Fox Sports 1.
The Union tweeted out a video of Bedoya’s celebration soonafter, adding that their “hearts go out to everyone affected.”
— PhilaUnion (@PhilaUnion) August 5, 2019
Fans from across MLS were quick to show their support for Bedoya’s comments.
As a United fan, I didn’t like seeing him score. As a Daytonian and a human being, I’m so grateful for what he did.
Thank you Ale.
— Brendan Cartwright (@Brendanukkah) August 5, 2019
— MBH (@one_citizen) August 5, 2019
LAFC fan. Thanks Bedoya and thanks Union for sticking up for your guy!
— ⚫????Mark Baird⚫???? (@Marker_B84) August 5, 2019
— Emmanuel (@ec_11_) August 5, 2019
Bedoya’s celebration also caught the attention of United States Women’s National Team superstar Megan Rapinoe, who applauded his use of his platform.
‘I am a human being first’
After the match, Bedoya explained that while the celebration wasn’t planned, he felt a need to act.
“Before I’m an athlete and a soccer player, I am a human being first. I have got kids. I can’t be the only one feeling the same way,” he told reporters. “Something has got to be done, it has got to the point where we have become numb to it, that is a big problem.”
Alejandro Bedoya: pic.twitter.com/J3XgDGT0w7
— Joe Tansey (@JTansey90) August 5, 2019
Bedoya also received support from his coach Jim Curtin.
“[After] 250 shootings this year – I’m on his side,” Curtin told reporters after the match. “It’s outrageous. Things need to change in this country, for sure, and I’ll support anyone who speaks their mind and is intelligent and informed on it, every time. That’s what Alejandro is. He’s passionate, he cares, and again, it’s a real issue in our country now that needs change.”
Jim Curtin on Alejandro Bedoya: “I’m on his side.” pic.twitter.com/vU2zI1gcuP
— Joe Tansey (@JTansey90) August 5, 2019
Bedoya spoke out after Parkland, too
It’s not the first time Bedoya has spoken out against gun violence, as he grew up in Florida close to Parkland, where 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were killed in a mass shooting in 2018.
In the wake of that shooting, Bedoya wore a shirt that read “MSD Strong” in support of those affected so close to his home.
A great win last night!
Wore this to support families affected by the tragic event in Parkland. Grew up 15 min. from Douglas. I grieve with those families but I’ve also been very inspired by movement they’ve started. Thank you for your courage & keep on keepin’ on! #MSDStrong❤️ pic.twitter.com/Wd88iWk9b5
— Alejandro Bedoya (@AleBedoya17) March 4, 2018
The Union would go on to win Sunday’s match 5-1.
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