10 Updates

The NFL Needs To Step Up To Arizona's "Religious Freedom" Bill

Feb 23 2014, 11:21am CST | by

by Arthur L. Caplan & Lee H. IgelThe NYU Sports & Society Program/> Michael Sam, meet Hank Aaron. During his Major League Baseball career with the Milwaukee Braves, Atlanta Braves, and...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

21 weeks ago

The NFL Needs To Step Up To Arizona's "Religious Freedom" Bill

Feb 23 2014, 11:21am CST | by

by Arthur L. Caplan & Lee H. Igel
The NYU Sports & Society Program/>

Michael Sam, meet Hank Aaron.

During his Major League Baseball career with the Milwaukee Braves, Atlanta Braves, and Milwaukee Brewers from 1954-1976, “Hammerin’ Hank” amassed 755 home runs and 3,771 hits, and was named to 25 All-Star squads. Those and other achievements put him on a road to being elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982 and ranked fifth on The Sporting News list of “100 Greatest Baseball Players of the Twentieth Century.” But his road to the majors leagues took a major detour when it came to eating in restaurants.

Jackie Robinson had broken the color barrier by the time Aaron arrived in the big leagues in the early 1950s. But, as Aaron later said , “Jackie Robinson started opening up our eyes. But it didn’t start, nor did it end, with Jackie.” That “it” meant “discrimination.”

Coming up through the Milwaukee Braves minor league system, Aaron was one of three minority players on a team based in Jacksonville, FL and traveling to games throughout the southeastern United States. Although the team was integrated, Aaron and fellow farmhands Felix Mantilla and Horace Garner knew that most restaurants were not. Time and again, they would not be served when the team showed up for a meal on the road. A few of their teammates stood up to make sure they ate. Many did not. Nor did others, including league officials.

Could Sam, the University of Missouri All-American football player and top draft prospect who is likely to be the first openly gay player in the NFL, come up on a similar road as Aaron did? He might, if a bill now making its way from the Arizona legislature to the governor’s desk is signed into law.

That bill, which legislators gave final approval on this past Thursday, provides changes to existing state laws having to do with religious freedom, including an expansion of who is protected under those laws. It would effectively allow a business owner to deny service to customers when such work violates their religious beliefs. And if a discrimination lawsuit were to emerge as a result, the business owner would have a defense by providing that the decision was motivated by “sincerely held” religious beliefs and that giving such service would have substantially burdened the exercise of those beliefs.

Critics of the bill see it as a license to discriminate against certain people, particularly those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. They are right. This is simply revisiting the Jim Crow South in a different guise—skin color is now sexual preference.

The bill is flat out immoral, most likely unconstitutional, and mind-bogglingly biased. If that’s not enough on its face, imagine a football player having to stay on the bus out in the parking lot when his team shows up at a restaurant for a meal or at a stadium for a game.

Nowadays, most teammates wouldn’t stand for that. They would just as well go hungry than patronize the restaurant or refuse to enter the stadium for the game. Or they would have to go into the restaurant hoping that the staff would agree to prepare a takeout meal or arrive at the stadium hoping law enforcement doesn’t block the bus. Make no mistake: these are the kinds of dimensions being set up if Jan Brewer, Governor of Arizona, signs the bill into law.

As things stand today, the NFL has plans for the upcoming Super Bowl to be played in Arizona. Unlike MLB of yesteryear, the NFL has been making nice noises about welcoming Michael Sam into its stadiums. So, the league needs to flex its muscles and tell the state that it won’t be coming there if officials pass laws allowing businesses to deny service to customers on the basis of race, religion, ethnicity, or gender preference for a mate. For the NFL and all professional and college sports leagues that are encouraging diversity, not doing so means simply being politically correct in rhetoric but not behavior.

Let’s face it: the Governor of Arizona is thinking about signing into law a form of legalized discrimination. The NFL and every other league with a team in Arizona should not wait to see what she does. It shouldn’t take images of Hank Aaron eating alone or with his fellow minority teammates to get them all to say, together and loudly, that this is unacceptable. If anything, it’s the Arizona legislators—not people like Michael Sam—who ought to end up eating out in the parking lot.

Arthur L. Caplan, PhD, is the Drs. William F. and Virginia Connolly Mitty Professor and head of the Division of Bioethics at New York University Langone Medical Center. Lee H. Igel, PhD, is associate professor in the Tisch Center at New York University . Both are affiliated with NYU’s Sports and Society Program.

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
10

6 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Cambodia's Famous Battambang Circus
KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the Dewan Rakyat was told ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

6 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Melbourne Rising Media Launch
KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken int ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

6 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Federal Aviation Administration Bans All US Flights To Israel
KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the Dewan Rakyat toda ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

6 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

6 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

INDIA-CHINA-DIPLOMACY-TRADE
PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ in the southern ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

6 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Government Weekly Cabinet Meeting
KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in co ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

7 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said. ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Iskandar Johor Open - Previews
JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involving an allocati ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

7 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM - Day One
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

7 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Damansara Skyway (Kidex ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Russians 'gecko sex' satellite lost in space
Moscow, July 25 (IANS) A Russian satellite with a crew of five lizards sent in space to understand the effects of weightlessness on sexual intercourse has gone missing.
 
 
Canada announces sanctions against Russia, Ukraine
Ottawa, July 25 (IANS) The Canadian Government has announced new economic sanctions and travel bans against Ukrainian and Russian individuals and entities.
 
 
Okay, so gender issues can be confusing (The Funny Side)
I was so outraged when an American friend said that Asian males were kind of "girly" that I almost hit him with my shoulder bag. But instead I just gave him a cold stare and turned back to my Hello Kitty collection.
 
 
China's yuan weakens
Beijing, July 25 (IANS) The value of the Chinese currency renminbi, or the yuan, weakened by 18 basis points to 6.1597 against the US dollar in its central parity Friday, authorities said.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Conan O'Brien still rivals with Leno
Conan O'Brien admits that the feud between him and Jay Leno remains fierce. The bitter rivalry began in earnest in 2010 when, barely six months after replacing Leno as host of 'The Tonight Show', Conan was ousted from...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Kerry Washington's 'hustle' before fame
Kerry Washington had ''serious hustle going on'' before she made it as an actress. The 37-year-old star studied for a degree in anthropology and sociology before pursuing a career in acting and she's revealed that...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Russians 'gecko sex' satellite lost in space
Moscow, July 25 (IANS) A Russian satellite with a crew of five lizards sent in space to understand the effects of weightlessness on sexual intercourse has gone missing. The Russian satellite Foton-M4 was launched into...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Noel Fisher thought Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was a dream
Noel Fisher thought he was dreaming when he was offered a role in 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles'. The 'Shameless' star stars as mutant warrior turtle Michelangelo in the upcoming big-screen adaptation of the comic book...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Canada announces sanctions against Russia, Ukraine
Ottawa, July 25 (IANS) The Canadian Government has announced new economic sanctions and travel bans against Ukrainian and Russian individuals and entities. "The sanctions imposed are against a broad range of entities...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
More child abuse cases in Australia: Report
Sydney, July 25 (IANS) The number of cases of child abuse in Australia have increased by 30 percent over a two year period, authorities said Friday. According to the figures from the Australian Institute of Health and...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Breaking News: Hello Vino Is Amazon Fire Phone's Day One Wine App
Google has its wearables. Apple has its iPhone 6. And now Amazon has its Fire smartphone. Amazon also has the world’s first wine app to fully integrate into an online retailer’s own hardware, software, and inventory....
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Okay, so gender issues can be confusing (The Funny Side)
I was so outraged when an American friend said that Asian males were kind of "girly" that I almost hit him with my shoulder bag. But instead I just gave him a cold stare and turned back to my Hello Kitty collection....
Read more on Business Balla
 
Cafu offers to fill Brazil coaching role
Rio de Janeiro, July 25 (IANS) Brazil's 2002 World Cup-winning captain Cafu has offered to fill a coaching role under new Selecao boss Dunga. Cafu was an outspoken critic of the team during the World Cup and was...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Commonwealth Games Day 1 medal standings
Glasgow, July 25 (IANS) England led the medal standings at the end of first day of the 20th Commonwealth Games followed by Australia and hosts Scotland. India was at the fourth position with two golds, three silvers...
Read more on Sport Balla