Posts Tagged ‘LGBT’

‘March Madness’ Leaves North Carolina Over Bathroom Bill

September 14, 2016

'March Madness' Leaves North Carolina Over Bathroom Bill
North Carolina’s “Bathroom Bill” has cost it two rounds of 2017’s “March Madness” Division I men’s college basketball tournament games. The National Collegiate Athletic Association has relocated those games and six other championship events out of the state due to the North Carolina state law known as HB2, which requires people to use public bathrooms based on their sex as designated on their birth certificates. The law, which also nullifies local laws protecting the civil rights of LGBT citizens, had already lost Charlotte the NBA All Star Game and millions of tourist dollars. The NCAA decision is arguably a bigger blow to the Tarheel State, where college basketball has deep roots and a wide following, and Duke and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are legendary contenders. This won’t help North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory’s reelection bid, either.

Here are the NCAA championships North Carolina is losing to bigotry:

  • 2016 Division I Women’s Soccer Championship, College Cup (Cary), Dec. 2 and 4.
  • 2016 Division III Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships (Greensboro), Dec. 2 and 3.
  • 2017 Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, first/second rounds (Greensboro), March 17 and 19.
  • 2017 Division I Women’s Golf Championships, regional (Greenville), May 8-10.
  • 2017 Division III Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championships (Cary), May 22-27.
  • 2017 Division I Women’s Lacrosse Championship (Cary), May 26 and 28.
  • 2017 Division II Baseball Championship (Cary), May 27-June 3.


“NCAA  Moves Championship Events From North Carolina, Citing Anti-Gay-Rights Law,” Marc Tracy and Alan Blinder, New York Times

“NCAA had enough of NC inaction on HB2,” Luke DeCock, Charlotte Observer


“North Carolina’s HB2 Is Not Just a ‘Bathroom Bill,'” NotionsCapital


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NBA Flushes North Carolina’s All-Star Game Down the Toilet

July 25, 2016

NBA Flushes North Carolina's All-Star Game Down the Toilet
The 2017 NBA All-Star game will be moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to another location because of the Tarheel State’s bathroom legislation, the Association announced last Thursday.  The “Bathroom Law,” aka HB2, requires people to use gender-separated bathrooms and changing rooms according to the sex on their birth certificates, which denies transgender people access to public facilities.The All Star Game isn’t just a single pro hoops contest; it’s a 3-day weekend series of events for basketball fans, supported by the NBA, league sponsors, and local businesses, and the cancellation will cost state businesses an estimated $100 million.

ARRGHHH!!! responded North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory, or words to that effect. The NBA’s Charlotte Hornets issued a perfunctory statement accepting the situation and urging Carolinians to get it together or lose any chance at the 2019 All Star Game.

Other businesses and events have also cancelled plans for activities in North Carolina. Over 200 CEOs of major companies (including the state’s largest employers) have signed an open letter urging the law’s repeal. Scores of state, county, and city governments have forbidden government-related travel to North Carolina due to the law.The bathroom law is flushing billions of dollars in business activity and tax revenue down the toilet.


“The NBA Has Moved The All-Star Game From North Carolina Because Of Anti-LGBT Law,” Kevin Draper, Deadspin

“NBA pulls 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte over HB2 law,” Sports Illustrated

“NBA will move 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte over HB2 law,” Tim Bontemps, Washington Post


“House Bill 2 could cost N.C. $5 billion a year, report says,” Katherine Peralta, Charlotte Observer 

“Police officers have no idea how to enforce North Carolina’s new ‘bathroom law,” Mark Abadi, Business Insider

“North Carolina’s ‘bathroom’ law is about more than who’s in the next stall,” Paul Woolverton, Fayetteville Observer


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Orlando: American Shoots Other Americans

June 12, 2016

Orlando: American Shoots Other Americans
A heavily armed native-born American walked into an Orlando gay bar Sunday morning and killed at least 49 other Americans before he was shot by police. Actually, some people may say the perpetrator was not a real American because he was born in New York.

50 49 victims are known dead and about an equal number have been hospitalized, many in critical condition. At this time investigators have not established and reported other facts, but this has not kept commentators and politicians from recklessly flapping their gums. We await the NRA’s inevitable pronouncements that the shooter was mentally ill and that the bar patrons should have been armed.


“The gun used in the Orlando shooting is becoming mass shooters’ weapon of choice,” Christopher Ingraham, Washington Post

“Ex-CIA Chief: It’s Way Past Time for an Assault Weapons Ban,” John McLaughlin, OZY

“Orlando nightclub shooting suspect bought guns within week of attack,” Mary Shanklin, Orlando Sentinel

“Assault weapons remain legal and easy to purchase in US,” Ryan J. Foley, Associated Press

“Ban on Weapon Used in Orlando More Distant Than Ever, Even If Clinton Wins,” Ed Kilgore, New York Magazine

“Florida Nightclub Attack Just the Latest US Mass Shooting,” AP via NBC News

“Orlando shooting: The key things to know about about guns and mass shootings in America,” Max Ehrenfreund, Washington Post

“Orlando Shooting, 16 Front Pages From Newspapers Around The World,” Helene Snyder, Worldcrunch


“U.S. Gun Policy: Global Comparisons,” Jonathan Masters, Council on Foreign Relations


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North Carolina’s HB2 Is Not Just a ‘Bathroom Bill’

May 16, 2016

North Carolina's HB2 Is Not Just a 'Bathroom Bill'
North Carolina has a new state law protectin’ the buddin’ flowah of Southron Womanhood from having to share public restrooms with transgender women. But the school bathroom hysteria disguises other aspects of the law, which is really a catchall of conservative peeves.

HB2 doesn’t just forbid the Tarheel State’s cities and counties from protecting LGBT rights, it also bars them from adopting minimum wages above the $7.25 level, except for government employees. Must be a lot of cousins on those county payrolls.

The law also limits how people pursue claims of discrimination in state courts, forcing these into the federal court system. Previously, employees wrongfully terminated due to  race, sex, national origin, religion, age, or disability could file tort claims in state court. Now, if your boss fires you just because of your age — too bad.

The anti-LGBT stalking horse is being used by NC business interests to clamp down on employees, by rural politicians to spite their state’s cities, and by Republican candidates as a political wedge issue. North Carolina’s underpaid workers should think about that when they get their next skimpy paychecks, or when they’re wrongfully terminated.


Pope in the USA: Punk’d by a Tea Party Saint, Hugged Gay Guys

October 3, 2015

Pope in the USA: Punk'd by a Tea Party Saint, Hugged Gay Guys

When Everybody’s favorite pontiff, Pope Francis, visited Washington DC in September he had a secret meeting with intolerant, oath-breaking Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis and her current husband. It was a secret to His Holiness, anyway, who had no earthly idea who Mrs. Davis is. She was apparently one of many people he greeted during his Vatican Embassy stay.

Pope Francis didn’t set up the meeting; it was arranged by papal nucio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the Vatican’s envoy to the US, who was sent to the States by former Pope Benedict XVI to keep him from meddling in Vatican City politics. Archbishop Viganò turns 75 in a few months and is expected to be “retired” by the current pontiff.

While in DC Pope Francis met with a same-sex couple, Washington caterer Yayo Grassi and his long-time partner Iwan Bagus. His Holiness had personally invited Mr. Grassi, his former student at Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepción in Argentina, to a private audience, and there were hugs all around.

Lawyers for Kim Davis from the Falwell-affiliated Liberty Counsel claimed that the Pope’s off-the-cuff comments on conscientious objectors referred to their client, but the Vatican denied this, and many have observed that the county clerk is not a CO since she forced her beliefs on her deputies rather than letting them act on their own. Papal spokesmen have emphasized that the Papal greeting was not a show of support for the delinquent Rowan County clerk.


Saint Kim of Kentucky Rescued From the Dungeon!

September 10, 2015

Saint Kim of Kentucky Rescued From the Dungeon!

Free at last! Intolerant Rowan County Clerk Kimberly Jean Bailey Davis was sprung from Kentucky’s Carter County Detention Center on Tuesday. U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning determined that her deputy clerks were doing the work she shirked, providing equal justice under the law by issuing civil marriage licenses to all couples. The judge enjoined Mrs. Davis from preventing her deputies from performing her office’s official duties in issuing marriage licences to same-sex couples.

Mrs. Davis and her delusional lawyer claim that marriage licenses not issued by her are invalid. As Zack Ford points out, Kentucky statute 61.035 indicates otherwise: “Any duty enjoined by law or by the Rules of Civil Procedure upon a ministerial officer, and any act permitted to be done by him, may be performed by his lawful deputy.”


Martyr to the Cause of Intolerance

September 4, 2015

Martyr to the Cause of Intolerance
Rowan County Clerk Kimberly Jean Bailey Davis was led off by federal marshals, fingerprinted and photographed, and locked behind bars in the Carter County Detention Center in Grayson, Kentucky. Federal District Court Judge David L. Bunning found her in contempt for refusing his order to comply with the 14th Amendment and perform her sworn duty, issuing civil marriage licenses to same-sex couples. “Ms. Davis took an oath,” he said. “Oaths mean things.” She can get out when she agrees to provide equal protection under the law.

The judge chose not to fine Mrs. Davis, since her equally intolerant supporters would raise the money for her and she would feel no sense of compulsion to obey the law. Some Davis fans tried to set up a fundraising website for her, but GoFundMe’s policy forbids campaigns that aid any criminal defense. That doesn’t keep them from thinking of Kim Davis as the homophobe Rosa Parks, though.


In Kentucky, They Really Believe in Marriage

September 3, 2015

In Kentucky, They Really Believe In Marriage

Rowan County Clerk Kimberly Jean Bailey Davis believes in marriage so much, she’s had four of them. She’s making news right now for denying same-sex couples the right to civil marriage, a violation of the U.S. Constitution she swore to uphold. Apparently God told Ms. Davis that it’s okay to violate her oath to Him as well as the 14th Amendment.

For Kim Davis, the Rowan County Clerk’s office must seem like the family business, since her Mom held it for 37 years. Like her daughter, she also swore not to “commit any malfeasance of office” and to “faithfully execute the duties of my office without favor, affection or partiality, so help me God.” The Deity will no doubt settle with Kim Davis later, but Federal District Court judge David L. Bunning will decide if she’ll be held in contempt of court.

As County Clerk, Ms. Davis is paid $80,000 a year to do her job; annual per capita income in Rowan County is $17,094. Unemployment is 6.3%, so there’s room for one more.


Supreme Court: Love Wins, 5 to 4.

June 27, 2015

Supreme Court: Love Wins, 5 to 4.
On Friday the Supreme Court of the United States announced its ruling in Obergefell v. HodgesThe majority (Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan) held that the Due Process Clause of the 5th Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment guarantee marriage equality for same-sex couples in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the territories of the United States. The USA is now one of 21 countries with nationwide marriage equality.


The Phase

April 11, 2015

The Phase

Cosmic balance returned to Barracks Row two weeks ago when the Phase 1 Bar and Nightclub was reopened after three months of  renovation. Founded in 1970, “The Phase” is said to be the oldest continually operating lesbian bar in the USA and the oldest LGBT bar in the Nation’s Capital. That’s pretty amazing, since America’s lesbian bars are an endangered species.


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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

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