Seven high-profile sports championships have been yanked from North Carolina because of its law protecting women and children in public restrooms and locker rooms.
The opening rounds of the NCAA basketball tournament are the highest profile sport to be pulled from the state but there are others, too. Also gone are Division I and Division III soccer championships, and tennis, baseball, golf and lacrosse matches.
NCAA officials announced Monday it was moving the games due to its commitment to "fairness and inclusion."
"North Carolina's non-discrimination laws are essentially the same as 28 other states across the nation," he says, "and the federal government's non-discrimination law."
The NCAA announcement drew the ire of the state's Republican Party.
"I genuinely look forward to the NCAA merging all men’s and women’s teams together as singular, unified, unisex teams," stated spokeswoman Kami Mueller.
Applying the NCAA’s logic, she continued, "colleges should make cheerleaders and football players share bathrooms, showers and hotel rooms."
The Tarheel state made national news in March when Gov. Pat McCrory signed House Bill 2, a so-called "bathroom bill" that overturned a liberal City of Charlotte restroom ordinance that punishes businesses for discriminating against transgendered people.
Irate homosexual activists and other Leftists claimed North Carolina had supported a "cruel and insulting" bill, and passed a "heinous" and "transphobic law," among other claims, and corporations, tourists, and other groups promised to punish the state for its actions.
"I would love to see the influence, the money, the calls into the NCAA to find out what pressure these people were getting from outside sources," observes Steve McConkey, who leads sports ministry 4 Winds Christian Athletics.
"After groups like the Human Rights Campaign came in and poured money into local elections," says Rustin, "they were determined to pass these radical open bathroom ordinance changes, and so they really picked the fight."
Human Rights Campaign, the largest homosexual lobbying group in the United States, stepped into North Carolina's controversy in April by showing off more than two dozen "Repeal HB2" boxes supposedly filled with signed petitions.
The boxes were carried to the governor's office (see photo at right) as the media looked on.
But those stacks and stacks of boxes were empty, intended as props for media, and it was McCrory himself who exposed the charade. The signatures filled two boxes, his office stated, and a majority of the names came from out of state, not from North Carolinians.
Despite the boycotts and threats, Rustin says the state is glad to wage a fight on behalf of the public at large.
"There is absolutely no price that we not will pay to knowingly and willingly place the privacy and safety of women and children in our state at risk," he says.
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