So much disinformation about House Bill 2 (HB2) is being promulgated by the liberal news media and liberal politicians, it’s hard to know where to start with the news that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has moved seven events out of North Carolina, including two that were scheduled for Greensboro.
Starting in the beginning, all of this controversy was brought about by an ordinance passed by the Charlotte City Council.
However, despite what has almost universally been reported, that ordinance would not have allowed transgender people to use the restroom or locker room facilities of the gender with which they identify.
The ordinance required that all restroom and locker room facilities (with the exception of public schools) be gender-neutral, and it applied to government facilities and all private businesses in Charlotte, as well as companies that did business with Charlotte that provide restrooms or locker room facilities to the public. The ordinance went so far as to outlaw any signage that would indicate a restroom or shower was preferred by one sex or the other.
Gender neutral means that anyone can go into any facility regardless of their biological sex or gender identification.
HB2, better known as the bathroom bill, does not just require transgender people to use the restroom of their biological sex as stated on their birth certificate. HB2 requires everyone to use the bathroom consistent with the sex on their birth certificate.
So much that is written about HB2 indicates that the bill singles out transgender people for special treatment and it does not. HB2 treats everyone the same.
HB2 also places no restrictions on private businesses. A private company can have any restroom policy it wants, including gender-neutral facilities. But it does require people using government restroom and shower facilities to use the one consistent with their sex as found on their birth certificates. People who have sexual reassignment surgery are eligible to have their birth certificates changed to reflect their new sexual identity. In that case they are required to use the bathroom consistent with the sex on their birth certificate like everyone else.
What is truly bizarre about the recent NCAA decision to pull seven events out of North Carolina because of HB2 is that the NCAA doesn’t hold itself to the same standards as it is holding North Carolina.
The NCAA absolutely discriminates against transgender athletes. The NCAA policy on transgender athletes punishes teams that treat transgender athletes according to the gender with which they identify unless those athletes are undergoing hormone therapy. Other students are disqualified for taking performance-enhancing hormones, but transgender athletes are required to take hormones to participate.
If people are supposed to be treated in a consistent manner with the gender they currently identify with and not the gender of their birth, then any transgender student should be allowed to participate on the athletic team of their choice.
Some people don’t want to take hormones, and others for medical reasons are not able to take hormones, but the NCAA makes no allowance for these transgender athletes.
What the NCAA effectively does is define a transgender athlete as one who is taking hormones. A transgender athlete who is not on hormone therapy is not transgender according to the NCAA.
The policy also discriminates against males. A female to male transgender athlete may participate on either the men’s or women’s team without hormone therapy. But a female to male transgender athlete may not participate on a women’s team without being on hormone therapy for at least one year.
There is no such legal definition of transgender people. According to the Department of Justice, if someone says they are transgender then they have to be treated as transgender.
So the first question is, why doesn’t the NCAA hold itself to the same standard as it is holding North Carolina. Another question is why athletes who take performance-enhancing hormones who are not transgender are disqualified.
If the idea is to treat everyone equally, how is that equal? If transgender athletes are allowed to take performance-enhancing hormones, why aren’t all athletes allowed to take performance-enhancing hormones? It isn’t even an internally consistent policy. Transgender athletes are singled out and treated differently from all other athletes. Isn’t that by definition discrimination?
Just as troubling is why the NCAA is choosing to pick on North Carolina.
States that have joined in lawsuits challenging the federal interpretation of the laws governing treatment of transgender students which the NCAA is not punishing include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
A federal judge in Texas has issued a nationwide ban on enforcing the Justice Department and the Department of Education’s interpretation of how to treat transgender students.
Gov. Pat McCrory asked the NCAA to delay making a decision until after the federal courts had made a decision on HB2.
So why did the NCAA decide not to wait until the legal issues are settled and rushed to make a big splash by cancelling events in North Carolina?
The obvious answer is politics. This is an election year and the NCAA has decided to throw its political weight around.
You can’t ignore the timing. The decision was announced less than two months before a presidential election, and in North Carolina the governor, lieutenant governor, the Council of State and every member of the state House and state Senate are up for election. Republican Sen. Richard Burr is also up for re-election.
With the possible exception of barbecue, there is nothing this state is more obsessed with than college basketball.
This decision announced in November or December would have had limited political impact. But the timing makes it a political hot potato.
To their credit, the Republican Party has not backed down from what Gov. Pat McCrory describes as commonsense legislation.
North Carolina Republican Party Spokesman Kami Mueller issued this statement following the announcement by the NCAA: “This is so absurd it’s almost comical. I genuinely look forward to the NCAA merging all men’s and women’s teams together as singular, unified, unisex teams. Under the NCAA’s logic, colleges should make cheerleaders and football players share bathrooms, showers and hotel rooms. This decision is an assault to female athletes across the nation. If you are unwilling to have women’s bathrooms and locker rooms, how do you have a women’s team? I wish the NCAA was this concerned about the women who were raped at Baylor. Perhaps the NCAA should stop with their political peacocking – and instead focus their energies on making sure our nation’s collegiate athletes are safe, both on and off the field.”
Lt. Gov. Dan Forest was a little more subdued but still forceful in his statement: “The NCAA’s action sends a message to every female athlete and female fan attending their events that their privacy and security in a bathroom, shower or locker room isn’t worth the price of a ticket to a ballgame. We have seen the NCAA’s attitude towards women before when they stood by and did nothing during the rapes at Baylor. For years, we’ve seen the NBA turn a blind eye towards women victims of domestic abuse at the hands of their star players. Why should we be surprised now at the NCAA continuing this pattern of discrimination and degradation of women? The line has now been drawn in the sand, first by Hollywood, now by the NBA and NCAA, either accept their ‘progressive sexual agenda’ or pay the price. North Carolina will not play that game. We value our women too much to put a price tag on their heads.”