In case you missed the news, North Carolina officially became the most transphobic state in the country, a distinction many thought would go to a state in the deep south—or Texas. Personally, we would have put our money on Texas eventually being the winner of that race to the bottom, but kudos to North Carolina for not letting something like social progress from stopping them in their approving of a bill that eliminates the ability of local governments and municipalities from passing their own anti-discrimination laws in the state. Yup, North Carolina just limited the ability to extend civil rights and protections to its citizens, except at the state level.
Last month, Charlotte city leaders passed an ordinance outlining the city’s own standards of anti-discrimination measures for its citizens. This ordinance included a provision that allowed trans North Carolinians to use public restrooms that aligned with their gender identity, not their physical body traits. What was seen as a major win for progress has now turned into a nightmare.
Yesterday, Governor Pat McCrory, who served 14 years as mayor of Charlotte, signed a bill, HB 2, into law that eliminated the ability of city governments and municipalities to decide these things themselves. This all happened last night in an emergency session of the state legislature, because of course eliminating anti-discrimination laws is a state emergency. All North Carolina house and senate Republicans supported the bill, despite the protests of all the senate Democrats, who left the chamber during arguments in protest. It should be noted that 12 house Democrats joined the Republicans, once against proving that both political parties are fallible/shitty.
But thanks to the power of the internet, and a whole lot of justifiable anger from the trans community and their allies, trans people began getting back at McCrory. As best we can tell, it looks like JP Sheffield is to credit for the brilliant tit to McCrory’s tat. In a tweet sent out last night, Sheffield, a trans man himself, said to McCrory, “It’s now the law for me to share a restroom with your wife.”
— JP Sheffield (@JayShef) March 24, 2016
Once the fun started others joined in, and some of the conversation can be seen below. Needless to say, something tells me McCrory is going to regret having men forced to share restrooms with his wife. It might also be a shock to him when he stops in a local toilet to drop a twosie, only to see the legs and feet of the trans woman in the neighboring stall. Wait, perhaps this was his plan all along. Republican politicians do do some funny things in public restrooms (*cough*Larry Craig*cough*)
Beyond just impacting trans Americans, the North Carolina bill also directs all public schools, government agencies and public college campuses to require bathrooms or locker rooms be designated for use only by people based on their biological sex. It also marginalizes the rest of the LGBT community, stripping lesbians and gays of discrimination protections. While HB2 did include some nondiscrimination laws, none of these groups are protected under it, and now cities and municipalities can’t do anything about it. This is why we should have equal protections for LGBT Americans at the federal level, and this includes protecting the rights of trans men and trans women to use the bathrooms that correspond with their gender, not the anatomy they were born with.
Catch all the fun below.
— Dr.Dalek Therapist (@lust4apples) March 24, 2016
— Princess Dracat (@DiracDrynx) March 24, 2016
— Schmidt’s Perm (@bxe1234) March 24, 2016