Gurley legislation is for whiners and tax collectors

As someone who doesn’t keep up with football, who doesn’t like grandstanding, and who believes in a very limited government, you can imagine my despair for the pre-filed HB 3 by Representative Barry Fleming (R-121), “Education; programs; person solicit transaction with student-athlete; provide sanctions”

Aside from the riveting title, the bill is just bad news. HB 3…

Todd Gurley

…and then the jersey number. It’s no coincidence.

The bill summary says: “To amend Part 14 of Article 6 of Chapter 2 of Title 20 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (which you can find here), relating to other educational programs, so as to provide sanctions for persons that enter into or solicit a transaction with a student-athlete that would result in sanctions to the student-athlete; to provide for related matters; to provide for an effective date; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.”

Though I went to UGA for graduate school, I don’t have a “team” or a vested interest in this argument. If you do, I hope you can set them aside in considering what this legislation is actually doing. Let’s consider the following:

  1. Whether you believe student athletes should be able to collect salaries, funds, fees or kickbacks is not relevant here. The legislation strictly pertains to would-be ‘offenders’ who solicit student athletes. The rest isn’t under consideration.
  2. The bill calls for sanctions on the person who attempts to or enters into a contract/transaction with a student athlete for a purpose that would likely (love the wording) suspend eligibility for performance, participation, or scholarships. Sure, the student athlete would still risk school and NCAA punishment, but we are talking about the legal system. Laws are supposed to be equitable and just. Essentially, the legislation would make one party of the contract more culpable than the other even though both parties are freely and voluntarily engaging in this behavior. We don’t need to enact legislation to tip the justice scales when we have consenting adults. Organizational sanctions are sufficient if this behavior is to be discouraged.
  3. The legislation effectively makes entering a contract punishable under the law (and with a $25,000 sanction and a felony on your record, no less). Something that is otherwise legal with any other human over the age of 18 in Georgia. I have looked for precedent and justification or even something remotely similar under Georgia law, but I haven’t been able to find anything. There is a lack of “legal need” for this bill. This won’t make us safer and it isn’t protecting anyone…if that’s your logic behind government as a whole.
  4. Government is reactive. Sometimes too reactive. It seems as though we try to win hearts and then influence people because the premise of a bill may not be good. If this wasn’t Georgia and our state wasn’t swarming with UGA fans, this probably wouldn’t have come about. If it weren’t for the outrage over the season’s ups and downs with Todd Gurley, we may not be having this conversation.

A lot of times we hear people telling us to take the person out of the politics and they’re referencing the sponsor of legislation, but I’m not exactly a fan of the heart strings bills that use poster children to disguise expanded government. Pre-filed bills are often shells, too, which will be amended later, but this one is bad in premise and I hope our legislators – and football fans -are able to see that.


5 thoughts on “Gurley legislation is for whiners and tax collectors

  1. James Camp

    Major college football is a tremendous source of revenue for the University and entertainment for the alumni and fans. Penalizing the athlete for the greed of a few individuals is wrong. I agree with the intent of this bill and hope that a good result will be the outcome.

    1. thePERSPICACIOUSconservative Post author

      How does this bill further your cause, though?
      Do you think it will stop athletes from
      Breaking the rules?
      Why does the government need to step in when the organization already has sanctions?

      Also- isn’t threw more to a team than one player?

      1. James Camp

        Indeed, but unlike the case with Gurley, more often than not, the NCAA punishes the whole team by putting them on probation and or excluding them from post season games for similar infractions. Let’s be realistic, an athletic scholarship does not provide for all of the expenses of going to college and having any life outside of football. Profiteers and even opposing teams currently have the ability to cause a player to be put on probation. Even if the player did nothing, just being accused causes distractions for the fans and the players.

  2. Smartawb

    PC, I really had no idea of what the hoopla was about regrading Todd Gurley, but reading your piece informed me more than wading through a bunch of bull that I would have had to wade through.

    Excellent points, and they are all quite valid.

    Regarding taking “Barry Fleming” out of the picture because he is merely the author of the bill, the fact is that Fleming’s main bread-and-butter business is HELPING strengthen municipal governments to be able to beat the crap out of the individual citizen’s rights every time some issue comes up that involves an overreach of government.

    His intent here is to accomplish the same thing for his alma mater…which is a government entity in Georgia. He will gladly help any government entity in Georgia point a gun at you (or me, or anyone) and fire that gun without remorse if we don’t act like their loyal subject. He’s just that kind of legislator.


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