I don’t like to see my state blackmailed and I don’t like ultimatums much either, so I hope that the state legislature doesn’t cave in to the obvious blackmail attempt by the NCAA and the ACC.

The ultimatum was “do something by noon on Thursday, March 30,” and it appears there isn’t much chance of meeting that deadline.

I didn’t vote for the NCAA or the ACC to run North Carolina and I’d rather the representatives and senators who were elected by the people of North Carolina decide what laws the state needs and doesn’t need rather than have athletic conferences make political decisions for the people of the state.

If the NCAA and the ACC win this battle, what’s next? Might they decide that taxes in the state are too low and boycott the state for a tax hike? Could they decide that the districts in North Carolina have been unfairly drawn and boycott North Carolina until the legislature has drawn new districts? Maybe our anti-littering laws are not strong enough or our drunk driving laws are too strict.

If the NCAA and ACC are successful in getting the state to repeal one law, why should they stop there? I’m sure there are other laws in the state that the NCAA and ACC would like to see changed.

Also, the NCAA and the ACC don’t treat transgender athletes the way they are demanding that North Carolina treat transgender people.

Athletes in the NCAA and ACC are not allowed to compete on the team of their chosen gender. For the NCAA and ACC, it’s not enough for someone to declare that they are transgender; before they can compete on the team of their chosen gender they have to be able to prove that they have been receiving hormone treatments for at least one year. If a person’s gender is whatever they say it is and the state – according to the NCAA and the ACC – has to treat transgender people based on their own chosen gender identity and not their sex, then why doesn’t the NCAA and the ACC treat athletes the same way?

The NCAA and the ACC are boycotting North Carolina because the state requires people to use public bathroom and shower facilities in government buildings that correspond with the sex on their birth certificate, not their gender identity.

But the NCAA and the ACC treat athletes in a similar way. If the NCAA and the ACC are going to hold North Carolina to that standard why don’t they hold themselves to the same standard?

Not only is their attitude about North Carolina hypocritical, the NCAA and the ACC are athletic associations that have nonprofit status. They shouldn’t get involved in politics.

If they want to become political lobbying institutions they are free to do so, and then they would fall under all the rules and regulations that apply to lobbyists. One of those is that they would have to pay taxes. Churches and religious organizations have been warned for years that if they get involved in politics they could lose their tax-exempt status, why shouldn’t the same rule apply to athletic associations?

Greensboro, which lost the recent NCAA basketball tournament games because of House Bill 2 (HB2), has a non-discrimination policy for its employees that includes sexual orientation and gender identity.

Greenville, South Carolina, where those games were played, does not have those protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity for its employees.

The State of North Carolina, by executive order signed by former Gov. Pat McCrory, has a non-discrimination policy for state employees that protects sexual orientation and gender identity.

The State of South Carolina has no such non-discrimination protection for its employees.

So it would appear that North Carolina is more in line with the policies that the NCAA and the ACC are promoting than South Carolina, yet both the NCAA and the ACC have moved games from North Carolina to South Carolina.

It might make you think that it’s not policies on discrimination that the NCAA and the ACC are really interested in but the lobbying from the LGBT community that is really driving this issue.

If that isn’t the case, why would they move from a city and a state with employee non-discrimination protection to a city and state without those protections?

Originally I thought that repealing HB2, which was passed in a rush, and replacing it with a bill that would accomplish the same purpose without the more controversial parts was a good idea. But Gov. Roy Cooper has fought behind the scenes to defeat every repeal bill that has been introduced. Cooper says that he is in favor of a straight repeal, but when a straight repeal vote was before the state Senate, according to state Sen. Joel Ford (D-Mecklenburg), Cooper told the Democratic senators to vote against it and they did.

The vote was a simple repeal, no moratorium, no replacement. The vote tally revealed that 16 Republicans voted for repeal and not a single Democrat. So much for Cooper being in favor of repeal.

Which is more evidence that this is simply a political issue being used by the Democrats and their allies in the athletic associations for their own purposes.

North Carolina is crazy about basketball and has been for as long as I can remember, which is probably why the NCAA and the ACC are being used to put pressure on the state. However, it’s a shame that athletic associations are letting themselves be used for political purposes.

Once the deadline has passed, it will be interesting to see how much pressure there is to repeal HB2.