The Media Won’t Pressure Charlotte To Solve The Trans Bathrooms Squabble, But You Can

The Media Won’t Pressure Charlotte To Solve The Trans Bathrooms Squabble, But You Can

If progressives truly believe House Bill 2’s trans bathrooms law is harming North Carolina, they should be excited about a possibility to get rid of it. Curiously, they’re not.
Richard Nelson
By

Things haven’t been the same in North Carolina since Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts, in her selfish desire to be a progressive icon at her city’s expense, decided to legislate against uncomfortable looks in the locker room.

That’s how this whole thing started. A sex offender who once fondled a 15-year-old boy as he slept wanted the rest of society to normalize transgender bathroom trips through legislation, even though transgender people say they were already using whatever bathrooms they wanted. He was the president of Charlotte’s LGBT Chamber of Commerce (as opposed to the straight one) which conducted a survey about discrimination in the city. Spoiler alert: they said they found discrimination! In bathrooms!

(Note: In a poor attempt to defend a sex offender and his movement, Snopes twists the question at hand. It correctly states he is the leader “of opposition to” House Bill 2, but the two items and Breitbart link they post not only don’t make that claim, HB2 wasn’t even written at the time of their creation. So yes, everyone understands he was the leader of the ordinance’s creation, not the HB2 opposition. A Snopes Strawman is the worst.)

The battle, waged largely by celebrities, corporations, and sports conglomerates (isn’t it great when leftists are for the little guy?), has been non-stop since the North Carolina General Assembly stepped in to ensure that men couldn’t share a changing room or bathroom with women in public spaces.

If you haven’t been following this story closely—and other things are going on in Charlotte that deserve the headlines right now—you may have missed the latest twist. In a move that probably should’ve happened months ago, Republicans have said they’ll repeal HB2 if Charlotte repeals its ordinance. After all, there’s no need for a state law about bathrooms until a city comes along and makes a stupid, unnecessary law about bathrooms. We’ll all change clothes, urinate, and defecate like we used to in the good ol’ days.

The Charlotte Chamber of Commerce (the straight one) is on board. The city has a chance to reverse course and help the rest of the state it’s dragged into a national debate, but it refuses. There’s no chance they’ll feel that pressure from the media, so it’s up to the people to take it from here.

It’s On Charlotte, and Charlotte Ain’t Budging

Now sit back and watch the North Carolina media squirm. After months of liberal scolding that seeped from editorials into news and sports coverage, they are at a crossroads. If they truly believe HB2 is harming North Carolina, they should be excited about a possibility to get rid of it. But they care deeply about the optics: the winners and losers.

It would be hard to frame such a development in a way where the winner wouldn’t be Pat McCrory, the first N.C. Republican governor since 1993. McCrory and the Republican-led General Assembly (which took over both houses in 2010 for the first time since 1896) have long been reviled by the media and protested by liberal groups for…okay, I don’t actually know. Maybe the newness of having to work with Republicans for the first time since Grover Cleveland was in office scares them.

The last four years have resulted in the lowest unemployment rate since 2001, a budget deficit that turned into a $445 million surplus, the nation’s fastest-growing economy, raised teacher pay (the last Democrat governor had cut teacher pay, but the liberal N.C. Association of Educators protested McCrory soon after he raised teacher pay) and an end to scandals like those by the previous governor, the governor before her, and a former speaker of the House. But hey, those guys also think you should have a photo ID to vote so, you know. Racism or something.

The loser would be the hyper-liberal Roberts, who loves nothing more than getting LGBT ally awards and making the city seem as “inclusive” as possible. (For a fun game, when someone says the bathroom component of the ordinance is in several cities, ask him to name these cities. Roberts couldn’t.) Roberts could only issue this statement on the new development: “Some people don’t realize there’s no legal reason for Charlotte to do anything, and that’s the point we want to make clear to the community.”

But you knew that already. Rather than initiate this deal on her own, Roberts took the first big domino, the NBA pulling its All-Star Game, like a badge of honor: “All-Star weekend would have provided an excellent opportunity to further showcase our great and welcoming city. Charlotte has shown its commitment to equal rights and inclusion and will continue to promote those values,” Roberts said in a statement. “I appreciate the NBA and our Charlotte Hornets being such strong champions of equality.”

If you read between the lines, you can see other Democrat mayors are either getting annoyed with Roberts, but not wanting to risk the political suicide, or accidentally making our point for us, such as Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht and others: “This all began when Charlotte passed an ordinance which would allow people to use bathrooms of the sex they identified with. …. Interestingly, before the Charlotte decision I did not hear of ANY issues related to bathrooms.” I know, right?

Now It’s Mostly About Bathrooms

Charlotte could repeal its ordinance, watch the General Assembly repeal HB2, then work on reinstating the non-bathroom parts of its ordinance. Those parts would no doubt lead to a loss of religious liberty for Christians the next time a gay couple singles out a Christian-run business for a wedding-themed lawsuit.

McCrory has shown a willingness to tweak things, like letting cities set nondiscrimination policies based on “gender identity” and sexual orientation, in his executive order that no one talks about. After all, this is how government works. But Roberts wants the state legislature to put down its weapon first (and last) and allow the ordinance—bathrooms included—to go into effect, forcing private businesses to allow people of both sexes into whatever bathrooms and locker rooms they want.

Although McCrory has shown openness on state and local discrimination policies and the right to sue in state court, Roberts has made no such concessions on the most ridiculous and unpopular part of her ordinance. Alarmingly, she hasn’t had to answer for that.

The media applied all of its pressure on the state’s Republicans, hoping McCrory will lose to challenger Roy Cooper as a result (even if that were to happen, Republicans would probably control both the House and the Senate, making a repeal of HB2 unlikely), instead of their hero in Charlotte. That’s not shocking, because the media picked sides on this long ago.

Questions No One Will Ask If You Don’t

The media will sit back and try to make North Carolina turn blue in November, so take some questioning into your own hands. If the men’s bathroom is such a dangerous place for transgender people, why did Charlotte enact a bill that opens the women’s bathroom to males? Does Roberts not see how this flies in the face of the “rape culture” narrative that she and other progressives push?

What the heck was so wrong with how bathrooms were being handled before?

Can anyone legally define a transgender person? If not, any man could verbally affirm that he were a woman and successfully sue if he were removed from the other side’s bathroom. If Charlotte cannot legally define a transgender person, why are we even bothering with the locker room part of this?

What does Roberts think about religious liberty? Did she write that ordinance with the idea of taking out more Christian wedding photographers? Does she put scare quotes around “religious liberty?”

If Charlotte cannot legally define a transgender person, why are we even bothering with the locker room part of this?

If this issue is killing Republicans, why did McCrory’s poll numbers shoot up to their highest percentages in months after the NCAA and ACC pulled their championship games?

How can the changing room law be both unenforceable and discriminatory?

Why did the Charlotte City Council go forward with the vote and not remove the bathroom component even after the state government told them what would happen?

Is Roberts able to separate an LGBT person’s right to sue in court from rights to go into any bathroom, or are they equal in her sight and inseparable?

This is hurting Charlotte’s economy far more than the state’s, so why wouldn’t Roberts jump at an opportunity to change that?

That last question’s answer is simple: there is no heat on Roberts. In the eyes of the media, she has done no wrong and doesn’t “deserve” any of this. They refuse to see she’s letting her pride prevent fixing the problem she started, or that the state truly doesn’t want a poorly written bathroom law in any of its cities.

If you miss the concerts or sports games coming to North Carolina, even though they don’t affect the state’s economy, or would just like to see this issue go away, pressure the city council, which was reluctant to pass the ordinance in the first place (it failed 5-6 before later passing 7-4 at Roberts’ behest). You can find them here.

The latest twist has made it clear that Roberts can’t be persuaded on bathrooms and the media won’t find that ridiculous. But maybe the folks she dragged along for a ride will.

Richard Nelson is the pseudonym of a writer who lives in North Carolina.

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