Texas ‘bathroom bill’ could hinder sporting events

In the aftermath of a flawless Super Bowl 51 hosted by Houston, state legislators could be on the brink of killing any chance of hosting another major sporting event in the state. Texas Senate Bill 6, which would require people to use the bathroom corresponding with the gender on their birth certificates, is being kicked around in the state legislature.

This is a similar to the legislation that North Carolina adopted and caused the state to lose the NBA All-Star Game and several NCAA championship events and the revenue that accompanied them.

Opposition forces argue that the policy is discriminatory toward LGBT individuals. The NFL, NBA, MLB and the NCAA all agree and refuse to consider to bring their events to cities in states that adapt such a law.  In the 1990s the NFL refused to bring the Super Bowl to Arizona until they adopted the MLK holiday. As a result they’ve hosted two in 11 years.

“The NFL embraces inclusiveness,” league spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement. “We want all fans to feel welcomed at our events and NFL policies prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or any other improper standard.

“If a proposal that is discriminatory or inconsistent with our values were to become law there, that would certainly be a factor considered when thinking about awarding future events.”

The office of Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick issued a statement in response, saying that there would be nothing problematic about the bill.

“Despite persistent misinformation in the media, under Senate Bill 6, all Texas teams will be able to set their own policies at the stadiums and arenas where they play and hold their events. There is no conflict with the NFL’s statement today and Senate Bill 6,” spokesman Alejandro Garcia said.

Conservative estimates indicate that the state of North Carolina has lost $200 million in revenue because of its bill. Super Bowl 51’s revenue numbers alone are triple that amount, not counting the millions in revenue that the NCAA and others flow through San Antonio and Dallas.