Well, after weeks and weeks of threatening to take the 2017 NBA All-Star Game out of Charlotte, North Carolina over their anti-LGBTQ, and-trans HB2 — AKA The Bathroom Bill — the NBA has come through on its promise.
The game is out.
Last Thursday the National Basketball Association canceled the game after it became clear that state officials, including homophobic, transphobic Governor Pat McCrory, would make no moves to change their hateful law. Rumor has it that the game will now be held at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans though there are other cities vying to be the venue.
The 2017 event’s departure from Charlotte deprives the state of an estimated $100 million in economic impact and comes after the law prompted PayPal and Deutsche Bank to cancel plans to add hundreds of jobs. In addition, lawyers for companies like General Electric, Microsoft and United Airlines wrote that the law “is already damaging their ability to recruit and retain a diverse workforce and is imposing a substantial disincentive to investment and commerce in the State, directly impacting their bottom line.” In fact, some 68 businesses signed an amicus brief urging a federal judge to block the provision on bathroom access.
Add to that the entertainers — Bruce Springsteen, Maroon 5, Demi Lovato, Pearl Jam, Cirque du Soleil, Ringo Starr — who have refused to perform in the state, or those that do perform but do so as a way to raise awareness for the anti-HB2 movement.
It all was a big deal, and a big win for Charlotte, where the 2014 All-Star game was held, but after LGBTQ advocates, former NBA star Charles Barkley, and other athletes, along with NBA officials, called for a boycott if the law was allowed to stand, there was just one choice.
And now, Pat McCrory, who basically, gleefully, signed hate into law minutes after the North Carolina state legislators approved the bill, might just be headed for the door himself. But, Pat McCrory is gonna stand firm, and bitch and moan and kvetch about the “liberal” media — shades of the Mama Grizzly Bear™, you know — blame it all on “total P.C. B.S.” when really, what this boils down to is understanding and acceptance … and using your brain:
“It’s an insult to our city. It’s an insult to our state. And I think it sets a dangerous precedent of the corporate sports and entertainment elite basically asking for a quid pro quo on legislation or else they’ll deny their service.”
Actually, you, Governor, and your state, have insulted any number of gay and lesbian North Carolinians, and trans North Carolinians, with your backwards, backwoods hate-filled legislation causing the NBA, big business and mega-watt performers to stay away from the state.
See, governor, it’s like this: when you pass hate into law and refuse to see it, or even understand that its hate, what choice to people have but to, quite literally, take their ball and go away?