The state of North Carolina has recently been featured a lot on nightly newscasts and in newspapers everywhere. The University of North Carolina fought its way through the March Madness tournament and rose to triumph after defeating numerous formidable teams like Indiana University and Notre Dame University. Players delivered excellent performances every single game. As people in North Carolina celebrate the victory that they deserve, a recent controversy might just smear the hard-fought legacy.
A state that witnessed the greatness of Michael Jordan, Vince Carter and Rasheed Wallace recently entered a heated discussion after the North Carolina state legislature passed a law Friday preventing local governments from passing anti-discrimination rules to grant protections to LGBT people. In other words, the LGBT community might suffer, and there won’t be any protection from their local governments. It saddens me that in 2016, this is still happening in a country that promotes inclusivity and openness of discussion.
The City of Charlotte was advocating to protect the LGBT community from discrimination in businesses just months earlier, and then this happened. This new law aims to prevent local governments from enacting their authority in a way that might allow LGBT people to freely use the bathrooms they identify with. It requires people to use the restroom that aligns with the sex on their birth certificate and not the restroom that aligns with their gender identity, according to The Washington Post.
While North Caroline Gov. Pat McCrory’s concern about “breach of basic privacy and etiquette” is somewhat understandable, this law still remains confusing to me.
The law was put into effect Friday, and the people of Charlotte were not too happy about it. This legislation might impact the 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend in Charlotte, an event that historically brings a great amount of revenue to the hosting city.
The NBA promotes an inclusive environment among players and fans, and the league has shared its view on this issue.
“We are deeply concerned that this discriminatory law runs counter to our guiding principles of equality and mutual respect and do not yet know what impact it will have on our ability to successfully host the 2017 All-Star Game in Charlotte,” a statement from the NBA read.
The first to react to this statement was the Atlanta City Council. The City Council is calling for the NBA to relocate the 2017 All-Star Weekend to Atlanta. While this is a smart move for Atlanta, the NBA scheduled the All-Star Weekend in Charlotte for its own reasons. It’s carefully planned and chosen.
NBA spokesman Mike Bass responded to the City Council’s suggestion by saying, “We appreciate the invitation but are hopeful that the city of Charlotte and the state of North Carolina can work through their differences far in advance of the 2017 All-Star Game.”