Under the Dome

Reaction to NC legislature’s invalidation of Charlotte bathroom provision

A sampling of reaction to the North Carolina General Assembly’s passage of a bill that prevents local governments from passing nondiscrimination ordinances:

“Today our hearts are grieved by the actions of the North Carolina General Assembly which, we believe, far from protecting public safety, actually contributes to prejudice and misunderstanding toward our neighbors whose gender identity is more complicated than the simple matter of anatomy. We salute the courage of those who have to navigate such a complicated matter in such public ways. Their honesty and integrity is in deep contrast to the very real and present danger of sexual predators who are often very difficult to recognize for all their seemingly average citizen behavior.”

— The Right Rev. Anne E. Hodges-Copple, Bishop Diocesan Pro Tempore; The Right Rev. Robert Skirving, Bishop; and The Right Rev. James Peter Lee, Assisting Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina

“The Charlotte ordinance defies logic. That’s not tolerance or compassion; that’s absurdity.”

— Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of the NC Values Coalition, on Twitter

“Placing limits on local decision-making authority ultimately is a limit on the political power of local residents. Those residents can and do hold local officials responsible for their decisions. The League has and will continue to oppose legislation like this which pre-empts local decision-making and undermines the political power of local residents.”

— Paul Meyer, executive director, North Carolina League of Municipalities

“Thank you concerned citizens of North Carolina! The NC General Assembly successfully blocked a dangerous Charlotte ordinance during a Special Session of the Legislature in Raleigh today. Responding to urgent pleas from citizens all over the state, legislators convened the emergency session to approve a bill that will block the ordinance before it can take effect on April 1.”

— North Carolina Family Policy Council, on Facebook

“Our business is deeply rooted in the principles of collaboration and inclusion, where people from diverse backgrounds and experiences come together to share ideas, challenge the status quo, and spur innovation. We’ve seen first hand the impact of this collaboration among diverse groups of people. We cannot see any economic benefit from divisive legislation, and would prefer to see more attention given to issues that would have a demonstrable positive impact on all citizens.”

— Jim Whitehurst, president and CEO, Red Hat

“The ordinance Charlotte passed to appease the transgender community was written so broadly that it legally created a mandate to allow any man, transgender or not, the legal right to enter a women’s bathroom or changing room. … The General Assembly put a stop to this ordinance before it went into effect. With no apologies.”

— Lt. Gov. Dan Forest

“The manner in which legislators passed the most extreme anti-LGBT bill in the nation – voting hours after it was unveiled without adequate public debate – flies in the face of fairness and democracy. Legislators have gone out of their way to stigmatize and marginalize transgender North Carolinians by pushing ugly and fundamentally untrue stereotypes that are based on fear and ignorance and not supported by the experiences of more than 200 cities with these protections.”

— Sarah Preston, acting executive director, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of North Carolina

“Today Senate Democrats followed the lead of Roy Cooper and refused to make protecting the safety of our children a priority. We’re not sure if their rhetoric was stronger than their convictions or if they expected to be embarrassed by a majority of Senate Democrats joining Senate Republicans in voting for common sense. But either way, running out and ducking this vote is a serious breach of their duty to their constituents.”

— State Senate leader Phil Berger