By Annie Ross
Major League Soccer will not discipline the Union’s Alejandro Bedoya for grabbing a field-level microphone Sunday in DC and imploring Congress to address gun violence.
The decision came from MLS’s executive level; the league’s disciplinary committee, which considers potential fines and suspensions for things ranging from embellishment to violent conduct, has yet to meet this week and will not address the Bedoya matter, a league spokeswoman said.
In what the league said will be its only comment on the matter, MLS issued a statement saying, “The Major League Soccer family joins everyone in grieving for the loss of lives in Texas and Ohio, and we understand that our players and staff have strong and passionate views on this issue.”
The incident occurred in the third minute after Bedoya scored the opening goal in the Union’s 5-1 victory over D.C. United. The former U.S. national team midfielder, who is in his fourth season with Philadelphia, broke from the team celebration and jogged to the corner of the field.
He leaned over and said, “Hey Congress, do something now! End gun violence! Let’s go!”
His message was heard on Fox Sports 1′s live coverage of the match.
Afterward, Bedoya explained his motivation to reporters.
“It just hit me in my mind, I’ve got to say something right now, make a stand,” he said. “I’m a human being before I am anything. I’ll never just stick to sports; I never have. Something’s got to happen, something’s got to change.”
“I’m not going to sit idly by and watch this stuff happen and not say something. They can fine me if they want.”
Union Coach Jim Curtin said: “I am on Alejandro’s team in the Philadelphia Union and I am on Alejandro’s team in support of his comments gun control. . . . I’m on his side. It’s outrageous. Things need to change in this country, for sure, and I will support anyone who speaks their mind and is intelligent and informed on it every time. That is what Alejandro is — he’s passionate, he cares — and it’s a real issue in our country.
“A lot of people will tell me and tell Ale to shut up, stick to sports and all the stupid lines that come up, but it’s crazy in our country right now.”