NBA moves All-Star Game from Charlotte NC due to anti-LGBT law

Big news in sports and civil rights. The US’ National Basketball Association (NBA) has decided to move next year’s All-Star basketball game from the city of Charlotte, North Carolina because of a draconian anti-LGBT law recently passed in that state.

The impact of the NBA’s decision cannot be overstated. This could cost Charlotte $100 million in revenue from the game, and it will likely fuel other events to now pull out of the state, as the boycott had already been gaining ground even before this news.

The law at the heart of the controversy, HB2, does a number of distasteful things:

  1. It repeals city ordinances protecting the civil rights of LGBT North Carolinians;
  2. It forbids North Carolina cities from passing future LGBT rights protections; and
  3. It requires that people who are transgender to only use the bathroom that corresponds to the gender on their birth certificate, rather than their gender identity (more on that below).

The transgender provision is especially silly, and offensive.

It’s a bit complicated, but in a nutshell, your “gender identity” is how you self-identify your gender. Do you see yourself as male or female? Your gender identity is not based on what gender you look like, male or female, or what sex organs you may or may not possess. It is based on who you know, in your hearts of hearts, that you are.

Thus, the new law is going to require that trans women, who have not had sexual reassignment surgery, use men’s bathrooms. And vice-versa for trans men. And that gets particularly problematic in the case of, say, a trans man who has not had sexual reassignment surgery — so his birth certificate says “female” —  but who is undergoing hormone replacement therapy (aka receiving testosterone). That trans man is going to look like every other man. And when he enters a woman’s bathroom in accordance with North Carolina law, all bearded and hair-chested, women are going to freak out. (Though it does offer some delicious opportunities for civil disobedience, or rather, civil obedience.)

It’s really amazing the extent to which this move has backfired on North Carolina. It was only a few month’s ago that the LGBT rights movement was scratching its collective head trying to figure out how to effectively respond to the new law. Now, it’s clear that the law is toxic, and corporate America, and others, are on our side.

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Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in New York City, and is the cofounder of TimeToResign.com. Bio, .

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  • DoverBill

    I gonna posit that they would.

    Wrong is simply fucking wrong!

  • DoverBill

    A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

  • PattyJM

    Yes. No matter what they say Republican values _always_ come down to money.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    You’re talking about my home state. Well, I have something to say to you – you are so right. They elected those fools, so now they pay the price.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Good.

  • Alpha 50327

    The bill also prevented any localities from raising the minimum wage. Hopefully this will rally enough people in NC to kick out their shitheel governor and put the statehouse under democratic control again. The governorship they can probably get, but the statehouse districts are so gerrymandered thanks to the DNC shitting the bed in the 2010 backlash that they probably won’t make much progress there.

  • I didn’t either

  • 4. HB2 also repealed the 30-year-old right North Carolinians had to sue in state court if they were subject to discrimination on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, gender, age, or disability. Until HB2, Mississippi was the only other state where this was the case.

    Basically, if you are subject to workplace, housing, or commerce discrimination on any of those categories in NC, your only option is to sue in federal court — which is much more expensive and takes far longer.

  • Zorba

    Just because the franchise has a minority owner, doesn’t mean it’s perfectly fine for the state to discriminate against the transgendered.
    And I hardly think that (now billionaire) Michael Jordan, the owner of 89.5% of the Hornets, is suffering any.

  • Jimmy

    Shit! I did not expect NBA, or any sports organization, to have th guts to do them. Good for them. It’s sad the people of North Carolina will be impacted by this, but then they voted the idiots into office so they only have themselves to blame.

  • Zorba

    Good. I hope NC loses even more money than this, and that other events pull out of there, too.

  • ||| Jus’speakin’th’truth |||

    Interesting. The NBA finally allows the ASG to be hosted by a franchise with a minority owner, then pulls the rug out from under him. Wonder if they would have done this to Cuban or Dolan or the Buss family…

  • Quilla

    Good.

    If you can’t talk sense to these wingnuts, steal their wallet.

    Kudos to the NBA!

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