It’s obvious that a conflict over LGBT rights in the South is flaring, but it had kept it’s way out of the NFL; until now that is. The Atlanta Falcons are set to get a new stadium soon, and with every new stadium is the rumor that the city will host a Superbowl. However, this may not be the case for Atlanta. Currently in Georgia, a bill is close to being signed that would allow “faith-based” organizations to refuse to serve homosexuals and/or bisexuals on religious grounds.
With the NFL being a huge company, they have to issue a warning that if this bill is passed, the Superbowl bid for Atlanta is going to be jeopardized. A conflict like this has come up before with the state of Arizona. In 2014 Arizona was about to pass a bill very similar to one Georgia is about to pass. However, when the NFL issued a warning, Arizona backed off and ended up not passing the bill.
This isn’t the only time Arizona and the NFL have had issues. A couple decades ago Arizona refused to acknowledge MLK Day as a holiday and the NFL moved the Super bowl from Arizona to California. Even with the warning and the past incidents, many fans refuse to believe that the NFL will do anything.
As many know, the upcoming Superbowl is in Houston, Texas. What some people don’t know is that Texas has a bill in place similar to the one in Georgia. Yet, the Superbowl is still in Texas. This leaves many people to think that the NFL won’t do anything. With either decision the NFL will be made to look like the bad guys. If they allow Atlanta to keep their bid, assuming the bill is passed, then they look bad for going to a place of high discrimination. If they don’t allow Atlanta to keep their bid, assuming the bill is passed, they look hypocritical for going to Texas, but not Atlanta. It will be very interesting to see how the NFL acts on this.