|NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell|
As Georgia’s newly passed House Bill 757 – the so-called ‘Religious Freedom’ legislation – heads to Gov. Nathan Deal’s desk for signature or veto, big businesses are weighing in and they don’t like what they see.
While pretending to protect religious freedoms, what HB757 actually does is legalize discrimination against LGBTs.
Now, the NFL has sent a non-too-subtle message to Gov. Deal – veto the hate or lose the Super Bowl.
“NFL policies emphasize tolerance and inclusiveness, and prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or any other improper standard. Whether the laws and regulations of a state and local community are consistent with these policies would be one of many factors NFL owners may use to evaluate potential Super Bowl host sites.”
Atlanta is one of the four finalists to host the Super Bowl in 2019 and 2020. The Atlanta Falcons have been embroiled in a controversy of their own this month after reports of coaches asking prospective players if they are gay.
Meanwhile, Falcons owner Arthur Blank has publicly opposed the bill:
“One of my bedrock values is ‘Include Everyone’ and it’s a principle we embrace and strive to live each and every day with my family and our associates, a vast majority of which live and work in Georgia. I strongly believe a diverse, inclusive and welcoming Georgia is critical to our citizens and the millions of visitors coming to enjoy all that our great state has to offer. House Bill 757 undermines these principles and would have long-lasting negative impact on our state and the people of Georgia.”
It wouldn’t be the first time the NFL moved a Super Bowl over perceived discrimination. In 1992, the League moved the Super Bowl from Arizona to Los Angeles when the state refused to recognize Martin Luther King Day.