Most Americans know Burgess Owens for his pro-football prowess, including a Super Bowl championship. Now, with a compelling win in November, he’s headed to Washington in January as the newly elected GOP representative from Utah’s 4th Congressional District.
With 47.7 percent of the vote (or 179,688 votes), Owens beat out first-term Democratic Rep. Ben McAdams to take the House seat. Owens’ district, not incidentally, is one of 30 that went for President Donald Trump in 2016.
“I’m excited about being part of this remarkable freshman team,” Owens told Fox News recently during an interview on “Fox & Friends Weekend.”
“It’s a team that shows what America [is] putting together,” Owens continued with passion. “I just want to thank Americans out there for allowing us to have this voice, this contrast, against the socialist, Marxist left. Many people have no idea how disastrous that ideology is. So our goal, very simply, is to point out that we can be diverse, which we are,” added Owens.
“That’s what Americans are—we have different cultures, backgrounds, colors. But what we have in common is that we have a love for our country, a priority for ‘we the people,’ and we want to make sure we stay free.”
Owens, 69, said that today, on college campuses and elsewhere across our country, “Socialism [has been gaining] some ground here. We have people that are within the academia world—I call them cowards and bullies, little termites. They’re leftists and professors who actually take our kids, who come in with big dreams—and then these kids leave college with debt and degrees that mean nothing, and they hate our country. So we have to make sure we pull our country back, focus on those things that make us successful. The free market is what it’s all about, and Judeo-Christian values—that’s what we have to focus on.”
Owens also noted that “business ownership is a foundation of our freedom, it’s where our middle class comes from”—and that “the left hates business owners because it gives power to our middle class … Understand that that’s what they [the left] are after right now,” he said, referencing the continued calls for closures and lockdowns during this year of coronavirus.
The newly elected representative also supports being part of a new group of pro-America conservative GOP representatives dubbed the “Freedom Force,” in stark contrast to the far-left and big-government progressives in Congress known as the “Squad.”
Born in Columbus, Ohio, in 1951, Owens was raised in a Baptist home. He earned his bachelor’s degree in biology/chemistry at the University of Miami (the family had moved to Florida earlier). Owens says that “his life was shaped by being a black man growing up in the deep South—how his father’s ambition to overcome obstacles helped build his character,” as a piece in The Salt Lake Tribune pointed out.
Owens played football on scholarship at the University of Miami, and during his college career was named to Who’s Who Among College Students in American Universities and Colleges. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Outstanding College Athletes of America, as his campaign website also details, and later, he was inducted into the University of Miami’s Hall of Fame and given the Orange Bowl Ring of Honor.
Afterward, he spent a decade as a pro-football player in the NFL as a safety, first with the New York Jets, then with the Oakland Raiders. In 1980, he helped the Raiders secure a Super Bowl Championship.
After his pro-football days, Owens founded Second Chance 4 Youth, a non-profit organization based in Utah that brings hope and opportunity to young people who have been incarcerated. But Owens himself also experienced many years of trial and struggle—some of which he detailed during his moving speech this summer at the Republican National Convention. He was honest enough to state publicly that after he “lost everything,” he had to work as a chimney sweep to get himself back on his feet. He believes there is no better country to be part of, and to serve in and give back to, than the United States of America.
President Donald Trump endorsed the conservative Owens in his run for Congress. “A Super Bowl Champion, Burgess knows how to WIN,” the president wrote on Twitter. “Strong on Life, Military, Vets, and the #2A, he will always fight for Utah. Burgess has my Complete and Total Endorsement!”
Owens believes in the American Dream and in the American middle class. And yes, he believes that life begins at conception. “The right to life is fundamental and given to us by God,” he writes on his website. “All of God’s children are endowed with inalienable rights, which include life.” He adds significantly, “It’s hard to imagine [that] anyone who has experienced the joy of holding a newborn baby could possibly support taking [that child’s] life just moments before.”
Owens also feels strongly that the U.S. “economy will continue to expand if we seek out policies that encourage innovation and entrepreneurialism. I am a passionate supporter of free-market principles,” he says on his website. “Government must get out of the way.”
This article was written by Maureen Mackey. She is a writer, editor, and web content strategist in the New York City area.