Special session called to trip up transgender promotion

By Bob Unruh

gender-restroom

A special legislative session is planned Wednesday in North Carolina for state lawmakers to pull the reins on a progressive council in the city of Charlotte that adopted a provision allowing men who say they are women to use women’s public restrooms and shower rooms – even though girls and women might be present.

“We commend the general assembly for listening to the voices of thousands of North Carolinians and taking the common-sense action of ensuring that no women or young girls are forced to undress, shower, or engage in other private activities in the presence of men,” said a statement from Kellie Fiedorek, legal counsel for the Alliance Defending Freedom.

“An ordinance that allows this to occur ignores basic physical privacy rights and is especially insensitive to those who have experienced sexual abuse and may undergo additional trauma when forced to be with a member of the opposite sex in this setting. We anticipate Gov. McCrory will keep his promise to take ‘immediate action’ and ensure that North Carolina businesses, women, and children are protected.”

In a joint statement, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, president of the Senate, and House Speaker Tim Moore said: “The Senate and House have received the necessary number of signatures from members of the general assembly to call themselves back into session. In accordance with the State Constitution, we will so call for a special session. We aim to repeal this ordinance before it goes into effect to provide for the privacy and protection of the women and children of our state.”

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The constitutional requirement was a three-fifths majority in each chamber.

Activists who have lobbied for the action said: “This is history in the making! North Carolina is the first state in the entire country to call for a special session to overturn a sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) issue. And the main reason we were able to have this historic victory is…. YOU! You signed the petition, you showed up at our rallies, you called your legislators, you called Governor McCrory!”

Tami Fitzgerald, chief of the North Caroline Values Coalition, added, “We commend Lt. Governor Dan Forest, Senate Leader Phil Berger, and Speaker Tim Moore for listening to the voice of their constituents, those who elected them to office, who believe it is common sense – no men should be allowed in women’s bathrooms.”

The fight is over the recent vote by council members in Charlotte, where the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association is headquartered, which will allow “people to use the bathroom of their choice.”

The issue has played out in a number of other jurisdictions across the U.S., including Houston, where voters rejected a lesbian mayor’s imposition of the same transgender protection plan.

Charlotte’s adoption of the measure even drew the wrath of renowned Christian leader Franklin Graham, CEO of Samaritan’s Purse and the BGEA.

“It’s not over though,” he reported on his Facebook page. “North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory has been clear that this is a bad policy and said if the city passed it, immediate legislative action would likely be taken by the state.”

Graham wrote: “I hope they will take swift action to strike down this dangerous ordinance or bring it to a referendum for voters to decide. If this were put to a vote in Charlotte, I’m sure it would be overwhelmingly defeated by Democrats and Republicans alike.”

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The ordinance allows a man who says he feels like he’s a woman to  use a women’s restroom or locker room facility, even if it violates the privacy of women or young girls who also may be there.

In a report at NPR’s WFAE, Moore suggested an immediate legislative session to derail Charlotte’s plan, citing the imminent danger to public safety.

“Folks should have some sense of privacy when they go to the restroom, and this ordinance just blows that to smithereens,” Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Buck Newton told the station.

The change is to take effect April 1.

WND previously reported the vote by the city council was 7-4 for the open restrooms plan.

“Shame on Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts and the city council members,” Graham wrote then.

He said the ordinance “would allow people to use the bathroom of their choice, not based on their biological sex.”

He praised council members Ed Driggs, Claire Fallon, Greg Phipps and Kenny Smith “for having the courage to do the right thing and vote NO.”

Just ahead of the vote, he said, “It’s hard to believe that such a ludicrous law would even be seriously considered – and even harder to believe that at least 8 of 11 council members have said they would vote for it!

“Are people just not thinking clearly? This law would allow pedophiles, perverts and predators into women’s bathrooms. This is wicked and it’s filthy. To think that my granddaughters could go into a restroom and a man be in there exposing himself … what are we setting our children and grandchildren up for? There’s not a public restroom in Charlotte that would be safe!” he said.

He said it should be inconceivable that Charlotte’s mayor and the council members “have succumbed to the pressures from depraved sexual activists and are willing to put women and girls at risk like this.”

He pointed out that the same plan was defeated a year ago and it shouldn’t even have been brought back by the mayor.

McCrory said the transgender provisions opening up public restrooms to all is a concern.

“It is not only the citizens of Charlotte that will be impacted by changing basic restroom and locker room norms but also citizens from across our state and nation who visit and work in Charlotte,” the governor said. “This shift in policy could also create major public safety issues by putting citizens in possible danger from deviant actions by individuals taking improper advantage of a bad policy.”

He said he would expect immediate state legislative intervention.

The Houston case lasted nearly two years, ending late in 2015 when citizens, who were allowed to vote over the mayor’s objections and only by order of the state Supreme Court, soundly rejected Parker’s agenda, 62 percent to 38 percent.

 

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