The activist Left are losing the bathroom war.
After over a year of using North Carolina’s HB2 “bathroom bill” as a whipping boy with which to tarnish the state’s welcoming reputation and – more importantly – to fundraise off of, extremist left wing groups like Equality NC, the Human Rights Campaign, and the ACLU saw one of their worst nightmares realized with the recent repeal of HB2.
Worse still was the fact that the repeal was championed by someone who claimed to be an ally: Governor Roy Cooper. As a candidate for governor, Cooper and his fellow Democrats used HB2 as a wedge issue to deliberately harm the state he wanted to represent. In return, these extremist groups helped pave the way for his eventual victory on the promise that there would be a “full repeal” of the bill with no conditions.
And until there was, these groups and the activist Left were going to continue to put pressure on the NCAA, the ACC, the NBA and other sports organizations to keep their backs and business turned away from the state of North Carolina – because they know basketball is a huge deal here, especially at the collegiate level.
These groups used the pulling of the All Star game, and various ACC and NCAA tournament games to turn up the pressure on the state legislature to repeal the bill. “We’re losing money, jobs, our reputation because of your bigotry!” they would say in so many words.
In the end, however, these activist groups got the raw end of the deal. Yes, HB2 was repealed – but it was done under pressure the same week the NCAA said it was do or die time for the NC General Assembly on the matter. And Cooper was desperate to announce he had fulfilled a campaign promise.
But the “repeal” was largely symbolic and essentially left in place key parts of the HB2 legislation, like allowing private businesses to set their own bathroom polices, and making the state the only authority when it comes to setting bathroom access for public (government) facilities.
And there is now a moratorium on cities writing new non-discrimination ordinances (NDO’s) until December 2020 – or until the Supreme Court decides on the matter of whether or not Title IX protections extend to boys who “identify” as girls and vice versa.
The outraged left have been quick to respond, accusing Cooper of putting “money over people” – except that line of argument rings hollow when you consider how they used loss of jobs and revenue as a weapon against the state in an effort to get them to repeal (even though the NC economy has remained strong in spite of the HB2 backlash). As North Carolina Democrat George Fisher wrote:
Before HB 142: Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and Equality NC were both taunting the AP’s figures that NC would lose billions of dollars over the next ten years because of economic boycotts. Albeit, boycotts they helped inspire and create.
After HB 142: HRC and Equality NC are now saying transgenders were sold out over basketball games. (The NCAA gave NC a week to repeal HB2 or risk losing tournaments until after 2022.) You can’t have it both ways. Unless, you’re still trying to raise donations off of false narratives.
While the debate rages on as to whether or not a state should base its policy decisions on the whims of politically correct business elites, one thing isn’t debatable: For now at least, the North Carolina activist left – in spite of all their efforts at sabotaging this state – have lost the bathroom wars.