A new Indiana law could allow property owners, businesses, and employers to discriminate against LGBT people on religious grounds. With that in mind, Keith Olbermann took a segment of his show Monday night to demand that the NCAA pull the upcoming men's Final Four and 2016 women's Final Four out of Indianapolis and move its headquarters out of the city entirely. In addition, Olbermann insists that the NFL and NBA bear a similar responsibility with respect to the Colts and Pacers.
The call for a use of "moral force" from leagues, franchises, and fans sounds lofty, but he goes on to provide a heap of evidence that sports can affect change and right unmistakable social wrongs. If, as Olbermann notes, the NFL can help thwart an anti-gay Arizona law by threatening to remove the Glendale Super Bowl, or if the NFL players could boycott the 1965 All-Star game in racially hostile New Orleans, why can't leagues withdraw their tremendous economic influences to battle potentially homophobic doctrine now?
Olbermann presents quite a strong case that the NCAA, NBA, and NFL can and should take a stand -- that sports and politics are forever intertwined, and this is a chance to tug that rope. It's a case our own Cyd Zeigler has made as well, and it will be interesting to see if it's one any of these leagues take seriously.
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