While Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on Sunday defended his decision to sign a religious freedom bill into law, saying that it was ”absolutely not” a mistake, the list of high-profile critics keeps getting longer. The latest to speak out against this statute that opponents say gives businesses the legal right to refuse service to LGBT people: NBA legends Reggie Miller and Charles Barkley.
Reggie Miller, a hero in the state who played his entire 18-year NBA career with the Indiana Pacers, posted a statement on Friday on his Instagram account. The statement read, "I've never been big into politics but I'm very disappointed in my adopted home state of Indiana and the passing of Senate Bill 101.. I've always been about inclusion for all, no matter your skin color, gender or sexual preference.. We are all the same people, beautiful creatures.."
Barkley issued a statement through his agent on Friday as well which read, “Discrimination in any form is unacceptable to me. As long as anti-gay legislation exists in any state, I strongly believe big events such as the Final Four and Super Bowl should not be held in those states’ cities.”
The two basketball greats are not the first sports figures to weigh in against the law. On Thursday, NCAA president Mark Emmert made a statement in which he said, “The NCAA national office and our members are deeply committed to providing an inclusive environment for all our events. We are especially concerned about how this legislation could affect our student-athletes and employees." The NCAA men's basketball tournament's Final Four is set to be played in Indianapolis starting April 4.