Stars become first Texas pro team to publicly oppose bathroom bill

07 March 2013: Dallas Stars logo during the NHL regular season game between the Dallas Stars and the Los Angeles Kings at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA. (Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire).
Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire

Texas has become yet another state to attempt adopting controversial bills regarding gender identification and bathroom usage – but the Dallas Stars are not here for it.

According to the Dallas News, the Stars have become the first Texas professional sports franchise to publicly come out against the concept of the ‘bathroom bill’, releasing an official statement condemning the bill ahead of the impending 2018 NHL Entry Draft set to take place in the northern Texas city.

“The Dallas Stars stands strongly opposed to any legislation perceived as discriminatory, including proposed bathroom legislation,” President James Lites said Wednesday. “Dallas welcomes all, and we welcome all.”

“We are proud of our home and want every visitor to feel safe at home here, too, and that’s why we oppose this discriminatory bathroom legislation.”

While the three various incarnations of the bill have not yet managed to make it through the state legislature and pass into law, governor Greg Abbott called for the issue to be a ‘priority’ during the currently-ongoing special session being held in Austin.

While each bill is slightly different, they either restrict usage of restrooms based on the biological sex printed on an individual’s birth certificate or strip regulations put in place by various cities and localities to protect transgender individuals and their rights.

The Stars aren’t the first professional entity in Dallas to publicly come out against the bills, as a handful of CEOs in the Dallas/Fort Worth area have already expressed their displeasure over the issue. In a joint letter, signed by 15 CEOs (including the heads of American Airlines, Southwest, Texas Instruments, and former Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith), the Texas legislators were urged to re-think adopting the bills into law, largely due to the discriminatory nature and economic ramifications of such a controversial set of rulings.

The NHL isn’t likely to pull the draft unless the law is passed, and even then there’s no guarantee that the league would do anything as drastic as the NBA and NCAA’s actions against North Carolina last year.

Still, the Stars have made it clear that they aren’t thrilled with the manner in which Texas government is looking to shape the legal rights of transgender individuals within the state, and there’s always the chance that other teams could follow suit.

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