By Dr. Mark Creech
According to emails recently obtained from the Governor’s office by the Raleigh News and Observer, Bob Turner, a lawyer in Charlotte, had an exchange with his former colleague, Bob Stephens, the governor’s legal counsel at the time, expressing his displeasure with McCrory’s signing of HB 2.
The N&O reports Turner emailed the Governor, saying, “I’m a Republican but you have completely lost my confidence. Ask Bob Stephens my (former) law partner. You have caved to right wing, actually, redneck types…”
Stephens responded to Turner that if he disagreed with the bill, he should also contact legislators Bob Rucho, Dan Bishop, Phil Berger or others.
Wow! How is it lawmakers, activists, and others who support and advocate for HB 2 are disparaged as “right wing, actually, redneck types”?
A redneck is a white member of the southern rural laboring class.
Try calling the 40 black pastors, who back in May, gathered for a press conference on the Capitol grounds to challenge the federal government’s attack on HB2, “rednecks.” Try calling Clarence Henderson, the civil rights hero who participated in the 1960 Woolworth Diner sit-in in Greensboro, a “redneck.” These black pastors and Henderson are passionate supporters of HB 2.
Comedian Jeff Foxworthy has a long list of traits that indicate an individual “might be a redneck.”
Turner, however, evidently has his own list of certainties about them:
If you believe that men shouldn’t be allowed to use women’s bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms, then actually, you’re the redneck type.
If you believe that women and young girls should be forced to undress or shower in the presence of men, then actually, you’re the redneck type.
If you believe that every North Carolinian has the right to live and work in accordance with their beliefs without being punished by the government, then actually, you’re the redneck type.
But in all seriousness, let me ask a very important question. What’s less egregious about Turner’s classicism than the racism that calls a person of color the “N” word? It’s the same spirit.
If support for HB 2 makes me a redneck, then I say, Viva la Rednecks, and may their tribe increase.