Texas Gov. Greg Abbott went on Glenn Beck’s radio show yesterday and spewed some bullshit about the NFL (too political!), Colin Kaepernick (snowflake!), sanctuary cities (bad!), and something called the Convention of States project (good!), which, apparently, is a retrograde initiative designed to slash the federal government.
What made headlines, though, was Abbott’s response to the NFL’s statement from last week that said Texas could miss out on hosting another Super Bowl if a bathroom bill targeting transgender people becomes law. The statement said:
The NFL embraces inclusiveness. 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.
Abbott—Beck called him “America’s governor”—said that the league was “walking on thin ice” with its threat, and said the NFL “needs to concentrate on playing football and get the heck out of politics.” He then launched into a tirade about the NFL’s “last political statement” that went like this:
Allowing NFL football players to kneel during the national anthem. These are people, especially with the quarterback for then San Francisco, taking a knee when the national anthem is being played — he’s getting paid $100 million to play a game, complaining that he is oppressed. He needs to be standing up in respect for the men and women who died fighting in the United States military so he had the freedom to go out and play a game and get paid $100 million. I gotta tell you, I cannot name, or even count, the number of Texans who told me that were not watching the NFL — they were protesting the NFL this year — because of the gross political statement allowed to be made by the NFL, by allowing these players, who are not oppressed, who are now almost like snowflake little politicians themselves, who are unable to take the United States national anthem even being played.
The governor went on to say that some “low-level NFL advisor” would not be able to “micromanage” Texas’ legislation and added that the NFL needs to “learn their place” in the United States. (I was waiting for him to mention Deflategate because of what he tweeted on Friday, but alas.)
The Super Bowl, which was just held in Houston, brought an estimated $350 million to the city, according to a study commissioned by the event’s planning committee.
Last year, the NBA moved its All-Star game from North Carolina and the NCAA also moved its championships from the same state over a similar law. Performers and other groups have opted out of doing business in the state as well, costing North Carolina an estimated $630 million, according to Forbes.
Abbott talked a big game on Beck’s radio show—“Tell us how you really feel,” the host quipped after Abbott’s rant—but he, or at least the taxpayers of Texas, might feel differently with hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue on the line.