A new bill, nicknamed “the bathroom bill” is tearing my sweet state apart. Tied now with Mississippi, North Carolina stands as one of the most discriminatory states in the country. This bill, HB2, has gained global attention and swept across the front pages and screens of many media outlets. I hope this post informs you and encourages you to stand up to this heartbreaking change.
Yes, it starts with a bathroom. NC Governor Pat McCrory passed this bill eliminating a law that protects transgender people and allowing them to use public restrooms based on their identity.
You might hear someone say this is for safety. Or protection of their children. I am not mocking their fears; I am simply saying these fears are not based in fact. Statistically, transgender assault in bathrooms is not a thing. 3 cities in South Carolina practice the “open” bathroom policy with great success. There have been NO reported problems from transgender bathroom use in these three cities. Outside of the South, over 200 cities nationally allow transgenders to choose whichever bathroom they identify with.
Now to address the many claims of safety and protection: to be blunt, if someone wants to harm someone else, they will. They do not wait for a law such as this to enable their crime. They do not abstain from committing a crime since our bathrooms today are only men & women. The claim that HB2 enables pedophiles and sexual predators is exaggerated and irrational. Law or no law, someone with the intent to hurt and do wrong will. No matter what.
Major businesses around the country have spoken up about McCrory’s bill – airlines from some cities block incoming flights to NC, Google made public their disapproval, Apple spoke up about their disappointment, artists are cancelling performances in NC left and right, and even adult websites halted traffic from NC. The bill includes no plans to end discrimination against the LGBTQ community and protect them in their offices and jobs. McCrory has made this population stripped of their rights and very vulnerable. This is heartbreaking and a disappointing step backwards for my home state.
But what about outside of the bathrooms? Outside of the LGBTQ community? Does it have any impact? YES. Absolutely. The bill essentially knocked down any anti discrimination law in the state, meaning that anyone anywhere can be denied service for any reason. This can include religion, biological sex, disability, and even military status (yes, there are people who are anti-military). This is the part a lot of people don’t know; the impact that the bill has on a majority of the population is astounding and should be made more public. A lot of people I talk to (most recently, on Twitter) don’t know that the bill extends past the LGBTQ population. Because of this, I encourage you to research all of the components of a bill before choosing your side! Understanding the full impact and the true extent of a bill, no matter it’s contents, is very important.
After an explosion of criticism, Gov. McCrory stepped up to the spotlight and said there was a “great deal of misinformation, misinterpretation…I am taking action to affirm and improve the states commitment to privacy and equality.” (via CNN) But there is no information. The bill is not misinterpreted. The bill is close-minded, ignorant, and wrong.
I hope this post provided you with a summary of this bill; I hope this post serves as a call of action and a plea to speak up, stay up to date, and stay involved. If you have any questions about the bill and it’s impact, please don’t hesitate to ask me below via comment or you can email me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org. This posts featured image is via Amazon.
And HAPPY FRIDAY!