Because, Equality: Cuomo & de Blasio Ban Non-Essential Travel to North Carolina

You may have caught the recent ruckus from the Sweet Tea state of North Carolina. 

Whether it's from The New York Times labeling the state as a "Pioneer in Bigotry,"  or even the Washington Post calling for the NBA to remove the 2017 All-Star game from Charlotte, the world seems to have just now woken up to the recent assbackwardness of NC politics. 

What's the fuss about? A bathroom bill Governor Pat McCrory (see: dictionary definition of incompetence) signed into law last week requiring transgender individuals to use the bathrooms of their sex as stated on their birth certificate. 

At least, that's what the bill is about on the surface, and if you follow the small minded vitriol of Facebook commenters, you see that those who support HB2 are completely confused in thinking that's all this law is about. 

But not only does it break down and trivialize gender and sexual identity into the tawdry, commonsense binary logic of "A man shouldn't be in the women's bathroom, period," but it takes it a step further by prohibiting local governments from passing any kind of anti-discrimination ordinances. 

Everything about it-- from how it's a reactionary measure to put the city of Charlotte in its place for overstepping its authority, to a shady AF emergency session the House used to overturn a city ordinance, to even the bold-faced lies McCrory has sent to the media in response to the bad press he's gotten --is just awful. 

There's a lot to unpack here, but suffice it to say that the response on a national level has been overwhelmingly negative in the best possible way imaginable. Yesterday, both Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio spoke on the ban prohibiting state-funded travel from NY to NC.

It's a good day to be a New Yorker, right? 


“In New York, we believe that all people – regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation – deserve the same rights and protections under the eyes of the law,” Cuomo said in a news release

“From Stonewall to marriage equality, our state has been a beacon of hope and equality for the LGBT community, and we will not stand idly by as misguided legislation replicates the discrimination of the past. As long as there is a law in North Carolina that creates the grounds for discrimination against LGBT people, I am barring non-essential state travel to that state.”

Yeah, it's a good day to be a New Yorker. 

This isn't the first time New York has had to do this. Last year, there was a similar travel ban when Indiana was toying with the idea of a very similar piece of legislation under the guise of "religious freedom." The bill was changed, and the ban was lifted.  

In the past few weeks we had Disney, Netflix, the NFL, and God boycotting Georgia for their recently-vetoed "Religious Freedom" bill. We had Tennessee also knock down their own bathroom bill because it turns out they actually need the money they'd miss from Title IX funding


So while it's always a good day to be a New Yorker, it's still kind of terrifying that it even has to go this far before they come to their senses. The question now is how long until North Carolina gets its sh*t together? 

UNC is in the men's Final Four. The Carolina Panthers were just in the Super Bowl. The Charlotte Hornets will make the playoffs this year, and they're slated to host the 2017 All-Star game. 

NC is in the national spotlight for more than one reason, yet it's taken nearly a week for anyone to acknowledge that the negative reason is a little bit more important than the various sports-related ones.

Again, there's $4.5 billion at stake in Title IX funding. What in the actual f*ck are they thinking? And why does this always start with a bathroom bill? We were excited when de Blasio signed the gender identity bathroom bill, but we were still surprised that we even needed it spelled out like that. 

Sure, North Carolina doesn't seem to have much to do with us, and New York will probably always be the safe place that it is. But it's something to keep an eye on. The South is getting weird with it in an awful, assbackwards way, and none of it looks good. 

Check out Tips for New Yorkers Moving to Canada (from a Canadian New Yorker).

[via CBS New York] [Feature Image Courtesy The Wire]