Gov. Pat McCrory thinks transgender people are sick and mentally ill and that they need treatment, not protections from discrimination.
And he is sure that allowing them to use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity puts thousands of women and children across North Carolina at risk from sexual predators, even though that hasn’t happened in the more 200 cities that already allow it.
McCrory doesn’t talk this offensively in public about transgender people, but it is what his lawyers have argued on his behalf before a federal court considering the constitutionality of HB2, the sweeping anti-LGBT law McCrory signed into law in March and has been defending vigorously ever since, despite the heavy economic toll the law has taken on the state.
McCrory’s attorneys cite as “experts” on transgenderism officials with the American College of Pediatricians, an organization founded by a small group of doctors who left the widely respected American Academy of Pediatrics after it announced its support of adoption by gay parents.
As Joe Killian with NC Policy Watch reported, the American College of Pediatricians is hardly just another professional association. The group has a long list of offensive positions including the assertion that gay kids can be “cured” by reparative therapy.
Its positions are so extreme and bigoted that the Southern Poverty Law Center considers the American College of Pediatricians a hate group. That’s who Gov. McCrory is relying on in his flailing defense of HB2—which has almost come to define his administration.
Oddly, no one has asked McCrory directly why he is associating with a homophobic hate group or why he is arguing that transgender people are sick and mostly likely were abused as children.
And it’s not like reporters haven’t had the chance. McCrory has talked about HB2 frequently in the last few days, first absurdly claiming the law is irrelevant because the courts are considering it, then telling a business audience that the North Carolina Chamber wrote part of the law and finally saying that Attorney General Roy Cooper is partially responsible too.
None of that makes may sense. Officials with the Chamber immediately denied any involvement with the origin of the law that included provisions that removed the right of workers illegally fired to sue in state court, and banned local governments from adopting minimum wage ordinances or protections from discrimination for LGBT residents.
That means either McCrory or officials with the state’s top business interest group are not telling the truth. As for blaming Cooper, that it is even more ridiculous.
McCrory signed the bill into law only a few hours after the General Assembly passed it. Cooper didn’t have anything to with it. He has certainly been highly critical of HB2, but this is McCrory’s law not Cooper’s.
And all that political posturing in an election year is almost beside the point when you consider the outrageous claims being made McCrory in federal court about people in North Carolina he is supposed to represent.
It does make you wonder if McCrory agrees with Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, who recently told a business group that “Transgenderism is a feeling … it could be a feeling just for the day.”
That’s right in line with the thinking of McCrory’s pals at the American College of Pediatricians.
Don’t be fooled by all the talk about federal power and state’s rights and local governments’ role in passing regulations.
The real debate at the heart of HB2 is how the State of North Carolina treats LGBT people. Can they be fired or denied services because of their sexual orientation?
Yes, thanks to McCrory’s HB2 law that goes out of its way to make sure that LGBT people don’t have those basic protections that ordinances like the one in Charlotte provided.
And now we find out through court filings that McCrory thinks transgender people are sick and mentally ill, not deserving of protection from discrimination.
McCrory may not want to talk about it, but those views seem very relevant indeed.
Chris Fitzsimon is the Founder and Executive Director of NC Policy Watch.