Alejandro Bedoya got the Philadelphia Union off to a hot start on Sunday, scoring a goal in just the third minute of their 5-1 victory over D.C. United in the nation’s capital.
It wasn’t his goal that turned heads, however, but rather what came after.
Shortly after Bedoya celebrated with his teammates, the Union captain ran over to the field microphone at Audi Field and delivered an extremely clear message to Congress.
“Hey Congress, do something now!” Bedoya yelled into the mic, which was being broadcast nationally on Fox Sports 1. “End gun violence, let’s go!”
Bedoya’s message came one day after a pair of mass shootings rocked the nation.
A man opened fire inside a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, on Saturday morning, killing 20 people and injuring dozens more. The shooting marked the deadliest of the year. Then, later that night across the country, a man opened fire at a bar in Dayton, Ohio. He killed nine people, including his own sister, and injured 27 more.
According to the Gun Violence Archive, the Dayton shooting marked the 251st mass shooting this year, and Sunday marks just the 216th calendar day. The GVA defines a mass shooting as any gun incident in which four or more people were shot.
In response to the El Paso shooting, Mexico’s foreign minister said the country plans to take legal action against whoever sold the suspected shooter the gun used in what he called a “terrorist act,” according to the Associated Press.
Marco Fabian, who was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, scored twice for the Union, including a goal right before halftime to double the lead:
Marco Fabián makes it ✌️— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) August 5, 2019
He scores his 5th goal of the year and hands Philadelphia a 2 goal lead at the end of the first half 🔥 pic.twitter.com/W9YgJZUdtC
After the game, Bedoya and Union head coach Jim Curtin spoke to the press about the importance of using their platform to speak about issues that are plaguing their community.
Alejandro Bedoya: "Before I'm a soccer player, I'm a person" pic.twitter.com/Bc4TxnhVV2— Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) August 5, 2019
Jim Curtin on Alejandro Bedoya: “I’m on his side.” pic.twitter.com/vU2zI1gcuP— Joe Tansey (@JTansey90) August 5, 2019
Bedoya expressed his disdain with the lack of action regarding gun violence before the match, too, calling for more than just the customary “thoughts and prayers” that so often follows mass shootings.
Seeing more thoughts and prayers bullshit.— Alejandro Bedoya (@AleBedoya17) August 4, 2019
Words without actions are just worthless. America, it seems, is becoming a dystopian society.
Do something!!! Enough!!!
He followed that up hours later with ideas for lawmakers after a user called him out for not providing a “plan” or “substance” when calling for action.
I’m not a policymaker either. I’m shouting at those hypocrites to get their shit together. You want some plans. We can start with stricter background checks, red flag laws, making a registry for gun purchases, closing gun show loopholes, and taxing ammunition. Better for you? https://t.co/pHNw6EdueX— Alejandro Bedoya (@AleBedoya17) August 4, 2019
Only time will tell if Bedoya’s message, delivered less than two miles from Capitol Hill, will leave a lasting impact on lawmakers.
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