Another Reason to Stand By Arizona,....
About 10 years ago, the NCAA made one of its most bold and upright decisions: it refused to allow any more of its postseason tournaments, like March Madness, to be held in South Carolina until the state stopped flying the banner of the long defeated racist Confederacy in the face of 21st century societal progress.
NCAA spokesman Bob Williams explained at the time that the organization wanted to "ensure that our championships are free from any type of symbolism that might make someone uncomfortable based on their race." (And yet the NCAA has no problem with a school's nickname like "The Running Rebels;" clearly recalling the same Confederates who approved of slavery?)
As such, it is time for the governors of college athletics -- and the officials who control the BCS -- to expand their postseason ban. Arizona should be next, immediately. (That would be the same sham "championship" where revenue trumps talent, right?)
The University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., should lose the BCS National Championship Game scheduled to be played there next January unless Arizona legislators rescind soon and for good an anti-immigration law they just passed that gives police the right to stop and search for documents anyone police suspect of being in the country illegally.
After all, that law means racially profiling people who appear to be Hispanic, no matter what Arizona lawmakers claim. That means making an entire group of people, as the NCAA spokesman said, uncomfortable in Arizona because of their heritage. That's unquestionably wrong.
We all should be uncomfortable with that, however. As Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles wrote earlier this month, comparing the law to Nazi Germany: "The Arizona legislature just passed the country's most retrogressive, mean-spirited, and useless anti-immigrant law. The tragedy of the law is its totally flawed reasoning: that immigrants come to our country to rob, plunder, and consume public resources." (No disrespect, Cardinal, but that's EXACTLY what ILLEGAL immigrants do, whether you choose to acknowledge it or not!)
The NFL should toss out a bid it received recently from Arizona to host the Super Bowl in 2015. The PGA Tour, which held two events in Arizona in February, should scratch any Arizona stops from its 2011 calendar to prove it is more inclusive than it appears.
And Major League Baseball -- out of respect to the 29 percent of its players, four managers, one general manager and one owner who are Hispanic or from Latin America -- should certainly heed the call of an embryonic protest movement in Arizona and pull its 2011 All-Star Game from the Diamondbacks' stadium in Phoenix. (And guess what: none of them came to the US through illegal means!)