I am finally calling out the NCAA for its blatant association with sponsors who associate with Anti-Gay hate groups who promote discrimination and hatred against the LGBT community and then turn around and sponsor College Bowl games.
Specifically, Chick-fil-A sponsors a bowl game with a team from the SEC (Southeastern) Conference vs. an ACC team (Atlantic Coast Conference). Prior to purchasing sponsorship rights, this Bowl Game was the Peach Bowl. The game is played in Atlanta, Georgia.
It occurs to me there are almost certainly other Corporations with hate group ties that sponsor Bowl games, or college sports in general. This diary only considers one Bowl and one Corporation, while acknowledging the scope of the problem is larger than presented in this diary.
This topic has bothered me for a while now but I recently ran into an article that set me off. The article notes that in 2009 Chick-fil-A donated over 1.7 million dollars to anti gay hate groups. Those groups included: the National Christian Foundation, Campus Crusade for Christ, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Serving Marriages, Inc., the Georgia Family Council and the Family Research Council.
The Family Research Council is a prominent member of the Southern Poverty Law Centers Anti-Gay Hate Groups List.
Here is the Southern Poverty Law Center Anti-Gay Hate Groups list. Eighteen groups have been placed on their list thus far, including rather prominently the Family Research Coucil headed by Tony Perkins of Louisiana.
College Football is one of the last bastions of homophobia in Public education. College football players coming out during their college football years is almost unheard of anywhere in the United States. The intolerance extends to both private and public Universities. And the problem has been exacerbated by the very public attempts to Christianize football by Evangelical groups in particular. Tim Tebow, the terrible Quarterback with the Denver Broncos, is the poster child for these groups.
What would the NCAA do if they discovered Corporation X who sponsored Bowl Game ZZZ also donated to the Ku Klux Klan, or American Identity Movement groups, or even the Black Panthers? The NCAA would disassociate themselves from Corporation X ASAP. But homophobia is the last politically correct bastion of hatred in college sports. If money is involved, homophobia is allowed, just not acknowledged.
But the blame is not just with the NCAA as the Peach Bowl itself was created by a homophobic group, the Lion's Club of Atlanta in 1968 as the Civil Rights battle was raging in Southern states. Even today, the Lion's Club remains resolute in its intolerance toward the LGBT community. In 1998, the Chamber of Commerce of Atlanta took the game over and and sold sponsorship of the game to the Chick fil A corporation headquartered in Atlanta. ((The Chamber of Commerce in the 1950s was one of the strongest promoters of the career of Sen. Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin in the 1950s, who targeted gays for blackmail with his "I have a list!" charges and in the 1960s the Chamber was amongst the strongest opponents of the Civil Rights Act of 1964)). So the Peach Bowl was founded by bigots, taken over by the relentlessly conservative Chamber of Commerce and who promptly sold the naming rights to one of the most defiantly hateful and homophobic Corporations in America, the Chick-fil-A Corporation. And never once has the NCAA ever evinced a whit of concern over the extensive, public, and well documented tie-ins between Chick fil A Corporation and anti gay hate organizations.
The NCAA should be ashamed of itself, but I guess there is no corporate profit to be had by opposing homophobia in taxpayer assisted college sports. Shame on the NCAA, the primary protectors and enablers of homophobia in America's Colleges and Universities today.
I wonder how the NCAA would react if a gay themed Corporation wanted to purchase naming rights for a Bowl game and wanted to rename a Bowl the Rainbow Bowl, with a gay inclusive theme as its mission? Not a Chance!
1:00 PM PT: Located another good article about Chick-fil-A and their ties to anti-gay hate groups.