No Pride: Texas Rangers Only Team NOT to Host LGBTQ Celebration Night

Advocates are calling out the Texas Rangers for their lax inclusivity efforts and lack of an official Pride Night. 

No Pride Night for Texas Rangers

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Yuri Turkov

The Texas Rangers are the only one out of the 30 Major League Baseball teams in the United States that do not host a Pride Night during Pride Month. 

“Commitment to Inclusivity”

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Jacob Lund

Although they are the only team who does not celebrate LGBTQ+ culture and rights, they claim they are committed to ensuring everyone at their games feels welcome. 

A Brief History

Image Credit: Shutterstock / FiledIMAGE

The Chicago Cubs were the first team to host a Pride Game back in September 2003. Two years later, the Texas Rangers invited some local LGBTQ+ groups to a game for a fundraiser, which they do for many groups throughout the baseball season. 

Public Backlash

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Ground Picture

Groups of Ranger’s fans pushed back against the event, even creating a website prior to the event condemning the support for the queer community. There were even protests outside of the stadium before the game. 

Their Commitment

Image Credit: Shutterstock / zieusin

No matter the backlash, the Texas Rangers have kept the same consistent response, “Our longstanding commitment remains the same: To make everyone feel welcome and included in Rangers baseball — in our ballpark, at every game, and in all we do — for both our fans and our employees”. 

Delivering on the Promise

Image Credit: Shutterstock / irtravelalot

Continuing, “We deliver on that promise across our many programs to have a positive impact across our entire community”. 

A Look at the Politics 

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Carrington Tatum

Texan politics play quite a big role in the general opinions on the queer community, as Republicans have dominated Texas for more than a generation. Texas Governor Greg Abbott, along with other southern conservative states, have been campaigning to limit LGBTQ+ rights. 

Recent Legislation

Image Credit: Shutterstock / CrackerClips Stock Media

The Texas Legislature has passed laws recently to expand on prohibitions on sexual content in public performances and school books. 

Targeting the Queer Community

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Xavier Lorenzo

Many LGBTQ+ advocacy groups worry that these measures are meant to target drag shows and ban LGBTQ+ accepting literature in classrooms and public libraries. 

Cracking Down

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Vera Dobson

Texas is also the state with the highest population out of the 25 states with bans on gender-affirming care for transgender minors. Taking it a step further, Texas public universities have been told to suspend and dismantle diversity, equity and inclusion offices and training on campus. 

Transgender Athlete Bans

Image Credit: Shutterstock / DCStockPhotography

Gov. Greg Abott also signed the “Save Women’s Sports Act” to ban transgender college athletes from competing aligned to their gender identity rather than their gender at birth, following a similar law at the high school level. 

Mounting Pressure

Image Credit: Shutterstock / MOZCO Mateusz Szymanski

Feeling the pressure from the upcoming presidential election, the Rangers have received more pressure from conservatives to not instate a Pride Night. 

The Context

Image Credit: Shutterstock / ElenaR

The majority owner of the Rangers, Ray C. Davis, has donated more than $560,000 to the political group Texans for Greg Abbott since 2013. These level of donations place Davis as a “mid-tier donor” to the campaign. 

Houston Astros Show Support

Image Credit: Shutterstock / lazyllama

Interestingly enough, the Houston Astros have a Pride Night, but the Texas Rangers do not. The Astros hosted their first even Pride night back in 2021. Houston is the states most populated city, with a recorded 2.3 million in the metro area of around 6.7 million people voting Democrat. 

Liberal Leaning Hubs

Image Credit: Shutterstock / danielfela

Another more liberal leaning city is Dallas, which is not too far from the Ranger’s home turf. In both Houston and Dallas, the majority of elected officials are Democrats. 

Their Small Shows of Support

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Pair Srinrat

In 2022, the Rangers were a sponsor of the NAGAAA Gay Softball World Series when the competition was in Dallas and Waxahachie. The Rangers also participated in the NAGAAA opening ceremonies and contributed to several events throughout the series. 

Local Initiatives

Image Credit: Shutterstock / shutter_tonko

Currently, the Rangers are working with local initiatives such as the Pegasus Slow-Pitch Softball Association, who promotes quality amateur softball at all levels, emphasizing the inclusion of LGBTQ+ players. 

Pegasus Slow-Pitch

Image Credit: Pexels / Pixabay

The MLB and the Rangers invited Pegasus to join a training program for inclusion managed by the MLB’s All-Star Legacy Program initiatives, and will be hosting the game later in July. In the past, the Rangers have also partnered with the Resource Center, providing programs and assistance to LGBTQ+ communities and to those who are affected by HIV/AIDS in North Dallas. 

New Impact Councils

Image Credit: Shutterstock / PeopleImages.com – Yuri A

The Rangers also created an Inclusion and Community Impact Council to create a safe space for conversations, ideas and programs to support employees and their local community. 

A Complicated Relationship

Image Credit: Shutterstock / wellphoto

Member of the Inclusion and Community Impact Council Rafael McDonnell says, “It’s a complicated relationship. It pains me that this remains an issue (after) all these years”. 

Not Feeling Welcome

Image Credit: Shutterstock / pathdoc

So painful, that he almost did not attend the World Series parade last year after the Rangers first win with his boyfriend, as he did not feel welcomed. 

Who Is Making the Decision?

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Ground Picture

McDonnell says, “For a long time, I’ve thought that it might be somebody very high up in the organization who is opposed to this for some reason that is not clearly articulated”. 

The Hill They’ll Die On

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Banana Images

“To say that the Rangers aren’t doing anything for the community, well, they have. But the hill that they are choosing to stake themselves out on is no Pride Night”. 

Their Choice

Image Credit: Shutterstock / fizkes

Many advocacy groups are keen to remind the Rangers that the MLB participates in Pride Month, and it is only them who are choosing not to. 

Push for Support

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Me dia

While they may be supporting the community in other small ways, LGBTQ+ still demand the outward display of support regardless of conservative pushback. 

21 Beliefs About the Bible That Are Actually False

Image Credit: Pexels / Pixabay

The Bible is one of the most discussed and debated books in history, yet many common beliefs about it are more myth than fact. How many of these misconceptions have you heard before? 21 Beliefs About the Bible That Are Actually False

21 Subtle Racisms That Are Commonplace in America

Image Credit: Shutterstock / AlessandroBiascioli

Racism in America isn’t always overt; it often hides in plain sight through subtle actions and attitudes. How many of these subtle racisms have you noticed around you? 21 Subtle Racisms That Are Commonplace in America

Only Legal in America: 21 Things You CAN’T Do in the Rest of the World

Image Credit: Pexels / Ivan Samkov

The U.S. dances to its own beat, especially when it comes to laws that make the rest of the world do a double-take. Here’s a lineup of things that scream “Only in America,” sticking strictly to what’s written in the law books. Ready for a tour through the American legal landscape that’ll leave you wondering if freedom might just be a bit too free? Only Legal in America: 21 Things You CAN’T Do in the Rest of the World

The post No Pride: Texas Rangers Only Team NOT to Host LGBTQ Celebration Night first appeared on Pulse of Pride.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / University of College.