By Dr. Mark Creech
Certain lawmakers in the North Carolina General Assembly are in a tizzy to reach a compromise on HB 2 to satisfy the NCAA, and other sports entities. They’re concerned North Carolina will lose tens of millions of dollars for several years because these organizations threaten to withdraw their tournaments and games from the state if the measure is not repealed and a sufficient compromise enacted.
Now a number of them are ready to support HB 186 – Repeal HB 2/State Nondiscrimination Policies. Former House Speaker Pro-Tem, Rep. Paul “Skip” Stam says that if the bill passes, “North Carolina will no longer be a place where everyone facing the same circumstance will be treated equally. Instead, special rights will accrue to those claiming ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’…These rights will be used to browbeat their neighbors into submission.”
The result will not create the desired reset for the state to return to where it was before the passage of Charlotte’s egregious ordinance – the ordinance that necessitated the state General Assembly’s passage of HB 2. Instead, it will mostly provide new ground for LGBT groups and erect serious hurdles for citizens that will be negatively impacted by this politically correct form of government intrusion.
These lawmakers bent on compromising on HB 2 remind me of the man who was driving his brand-new BMW at a high rate of speed. He drove onto an overpass with a sharper curve than he expected. His car spun out of control, and he realized that there was no hope of keeping the car from going over a steep embankment. At the very last moment, he opened his car door and bailed out. Unfortunately, he caught his arm on the door. His arm was torn from its socket as the car and his detached arm flew over the embankment and burst into flames below. The man ran to the side of the embankment and mourned his loss.
A trucker approached who had seen the tragic accident. He stopped his rig and ran up to the man. The trucker could hear the man lamenting the loss of his expensive car: “Oh, my car, my car, my car, my brand-new BMW!!!!”
The trucker grabbed hold of the man and said, “Hey, mister, I’ve got to get you to the hospital right away. You’ve got more than the loss of a car to be concerned about; man, you’ve lost your arm!!!”
The man then looked down at where his arm had been. He looked back at the trucker in absolute horror and screamed, “Oh no, Oh no, Oh no, I’ve lost my Rolex.”
Only those whose priorities are seriously misguided would believe collegiate sports and any fortune that might come from them are as important as our citizens’ fundamental rights to privacy, dignity, safety, and full religious liberty. There is no amount of money or wealth that can equal or trump these rights. Any compromise of these is essentially the loss of them. It’s like saying the loss of an arm or leg is comparable to the loss of an expensive new car and a Rolex watch.
THESE LAWMAKERS ARE BEING FOOLISH!!! And this most recent proposal, HB 186, is foolish too!!!
Here’s some of what’s wrong with the proposed measure:
- Although bathrooms in the private sector would be preempted under the new legislation, cities would still be allowed to regulate the bathrooms and showers owned or under their control. Even though the measure raises the penalty for crimes committed in bathrooms, it does nothing to protect a citizen’s fundamental right to privacy. Penalties are involved only if a crime is committed.
- The bill expands the categories of nondiscrimination protections to include, citizenship, veteran status, genetic information, pregnancy, and disability. Such categories are not currently listed in the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, which only includes race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. HB 2 had listed “biological sex” to clarify that “sex” as a protected category did not mean “gender identity.” But HB 186 removes the word “biological,” making that interpretation possible by a rogue court.It should also be noted that including “citizenship” among the enumerated protected classes would open the door for illegal aliens to sue their employers who fire them because they are not citizens.
- The bill would allow cities via their town boards and councils to add “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” as protected classes to their nondiscrimination laws, thus exposing business owners who morally object, to oppressive lawsuits, fines, and even possible jail time.“Sexual orientation” and “gender identity” are purely subjective and not immutable characteristics, and, therefore, should not be elevated to the same level as “race,” or “national origin,” especially since such classifications always infringe upon religious liberties.Although the proposal would allow citizens who object to such enumerations to call for a referendum (if they can get 10% of registered voters to sign a petition), it would likely endanger them to the common and extreme forms of bullying and intimidation often used by Leftists, various activists, and politically progressive groups.
- Although the proposed law purports to exclude “Charitable Organizations” and “Religious Institutions” from its effects, the proposal does nothing to protect the religious liberties of individuals who wish to live and work according to their faith at their businesses or on the job.The proposal leaves church members, individual Christians, exposed as targets of discrimination. This approach is inconsistent with “freedom of religion,” which means one is free to practice their faith anywhere and at all times. But it is more consistent with the erroneous modern day belief in “freedom of worship,” which means you are free to believe, but you are restricted to the practice of your religious convictions within the confines of your church or “religious institution.”And again, though the proposal would allow for a referendum, the religious liberties of people should never be subjected to a vote of the people. The freedom to practice one’s religion anywhere and at any time is already guaranteed by the North Carolina and U.S. Constitutions.
- The measure undermines the authority of the state under Dillon’s rule, allowing for what will inevitably create a patchwork of nondiscrimination policy where some people are vulnerable in bathrooms and showers in one place, while others in another will be protected. In some cases, people of faith who live in one community will be protected, while others in another part of the state will not.
- The bill would allow Community Colleges and state Universities to set their own nondiscrimination policies, destroying uniformity of law on the matter, and essentially making higher education a separate branch of government.
I suggest HB 2 is the best compromise already – a common sense approach to balancing indispensable rights that must be scrupulously protected by the state with the rights of the private sector.
In Exodus chapter 18, Moses was encouraged to select leaders from among the children of Israel, “who fear God, are trustworthy, and hate covetousness…” Covetousness is an inordinate affection for money, wealth, or gain.
What is it but a covetous spirit that would place materialism over virtue? What is it but an inordinate love for money that would make a lawmaker prioritize revenue above rights?
God help us. Some Republicans and Democrats in North Carolina are showing that they are unworthy of the high calling God has given them to lead.