Call it what you want — anti-gay or religious rights — but if Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signs a controversial bill, you might not be calling Arizona the home of the 2015 Super Bowl.
The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, S.B. 1062, is the current controversy du jour out of Arizona, and the National Football League is with the opposition.
“Our policies emphasize tolerance and inclusiveness and prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation or any other improper standard,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told USA Today. “We are following the issue in Arizona and will continue to do so should the bill be signed into law, but will decline further comment at this time.”
The Arizona Super Bowl Host committee released a statement saying it disagreed with the bill and its impact on Arizona’s economy.
“On that matter we have heard loud and clear from our various stakeholders that adoption of this legislation would not only run contrary to that goal but deal a significant blow to the state’s economic growth potential,” a committee spokesperson said. “We do not support this legislation.”
Arizona is currently slated to host the 2015 Super Bowl at Glendale’s University of Phoenix Stadium.
Opponents of the bill contend that it will allow Arizona businesses to refuse service to homosexual customers.
But, as with most bills in Congress, the attack ads have little to do with the actual legislation.
Read more here.
The U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-3 to strike down three of four provisions in Arizona’s controversial immigration law, ruling in favor of the federal government, Fox News reports.
However, Justices upheld the so-called “stop and check” provision that allows police in Arizona to check an individual’s immigration status after a crime is committed if there is “reasonable suspicion” the person is in the U.S. illegally.
The state has geared up for massive protests regardless of the ultimate decision by the Supreme Court. Both supporters and staunch critics of the law had reportedly planned protests at the Arizona State Capitol building.
In preparation for the ruling, Ariz. Governor Jan Brewer also issued a two-page executive order essentially telling the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board to redistribute a training DVD for SB 1070.
The videos are to be distributed to all law enforcement agencies across the Arizona. The DVD discusses everything from reasonable suspicion to foreign vehicle registration.
A major point is made in the video instructing officers to not racially profile. It also includes types of acceptable identification that should end an officer‘s suspicions about a person’s immigration status.
SB 1070 was passed two years ago and signed into law by Governor Brewer. The move sparked a massive debate and legal challenges which have ultimately led to the Supreme Court.
Portions of the law were blocked including a provision requiring police to question people‘s immigration status while enforcing other laws if there’s a reasonable suspicion they’re in the country illegally.
As many news reports have indicated, the ruling is hardly the end to the heated immigration debate, but rather just the latest development in an ongoing political battle.
Read more here.
Over the past few years, Arizona has become a hotbed of domestic controversy. The ongoing debate over the state’s immigration policies will now be joined by an equally-controversial decision: The inclusion of Bible classes in public school curriculum.
Back in January, The Blaze first told you about Arizona’s consideration of a bill that would ensure that the Bible found its way into public and charter schools. Rather than using proselytizing as the basis for the law, proponents have argued that the Bible’s historical significance warrants its study in the classroom. Well, it seems these individuals have won the debate — at least for the time being.
This week, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer made it official and signed the controversial bill into law. Arizona is now the sixth state to offer courses in Biblical studies. Now, it’s important to note — before critics find themselves getting worked up over the legislative decision — that the classes aren’t mandatory. Additionally, the elective courses teach students about the Bible’s history as it pertains to its influence on Western civilization (this is starkly different than, say, preaching based on the holy book’s tenets).
Students will learn about the information present in the Old and New Testaments, the history that is recorded in them and the influence that the book has had on law, literature, art, music and cultural values. Despite this historical and academic focus, some groups are still unhappy with the bill’s passage.
Read more here.