Good morning, folks.

As of yesterday, “the worst legislature in living memory” is back at work in Raleigh. The NCGA’s return was noted, loudly, by thousands.

1. And now, a little story from CBS News. Reported from right here, in North Carolina. Nope, it’s not one-a those Charles Kuralt-style travelogues about mom-and-pop barbecue places frequented by some of the dangedest characters you ever met in your life.

Instead, it’s a righteous tale about a targeted community and allies that fought back against evil.

Demonstrations encircled North Carolina’s statehouse on Monday, for and against a Republican-backed law curtailing protections for LGBT people and limiting public bathroom access for transgender people, and House Democrats filed a repeal bill that stands little chance of passing.

The CBS reporter is referring to House Bill 946. More, from The News & Observer:

A group of House Democrats filed a repeal bill Monday morning that would eliminate House Bill 2 in its entirety.

Rep. Darren Jackson of Knightdale is the primary sponsor of House Bill 946. Jackson and his co-sponsors said they do not have any Republican support for their bill and haven’t talked with the chamber’s leaders about getting it a committee hearing this session.

“It is never too late to do the right thing,” Jackson said. “It is time for the governor and the General Assembly to make it clear that we are focused on creating jobs.”

Eh. Jobs, shmobs. Back to CBS News:

Thousands of Christian conservatives and other supporters of the law known as House Bill 2 gathered on a grassy mall behind the Legislative Building on the opening day of the legislature to praise the mostly Republican legislators and GOP Gov. Pat McCrory for passing the restrictions during a special session last month.

“It took great courage for them to establish this bill,” said Doug Woods, 82, of Raleigh, a rally attendee. “They need to stand firm.”

See? This is why we can’t have nice things. Like, you know, more jobs.

CBS News reported that eighteen anti-HB2 protesters were led away in plastic handcuffs, to jail.

2. Now your tweens think McCrory “sucks,” too. And to think that, before this week’s news, he just sorta “creeped” them “out.”

Now this, from Time:

Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas announced Monday that they would cancel their concerts in North Carolina because of HB2, the law that eliminates local protections for LGBT people and requires transgender citizens to use the bathroom that matches the gender on their birth certificates.

“One of our goals for the tour has always been to create an atmosphere where every single attendee feels equal, included, and accepted for who they are,” they wrote in a joint statement that both artists tweeted separately. “North Carolina’s discriminatory HB2 law is extremely disappointing, and it takes away some of the LGBT community’s most basic rights and protections.”

On the bright side, parents, now you won’t need to drive your kids to one of those concerts, and wait outside in the parking lot, smoking weed with other middle-aged moms and dads, and jamming out to Blue Oyster Cult or whatever. On second thought, that scenario sounds pretty good. Damn you again, McCrory!!!!

And speaking of bad politicians making kids mad …

3. School teachers rallied Monday to get the legislature’s attention, too. Throughout North Carolina, right at their own schools, with support from their communities.

From WNCN:

The main goals they’re looking for is moving away from standardized testing and getting North Carolina back up to the national average for money invested in students.

“When I first started teaching they were really trying to recruit excellent teachers to North Carolina there was a lot money put into public education,” said Mika Twietmeyer, teacher.

And now:

She’s taught at Riverside High School in Durham for eight years, but says there has been a big change in that time.

“We have less and less resources for our students and it’s definitely taken its toll,” said Twietmeyer.

According to the most recent National Education Association Report, North Carolina ranks as one of the lowest states for per student expenditures.

But with the safest bathrooms!

4. UNC received a new notice of allegations from the NCAA. This comes eight months after the governing body gave notice that a revised list of charges related to the school’s academic scandal was on the way.

From The Associated Press:

UNC still faces five serious charges that include lack of institutional control.

The governing body added a charge that the school failed to sufficiently monitor its academic support program for athletes in the latest Notice of Allegations (NOA) released by the school Monday afternoon. The NCAA said the university also failed to properly oversee the formerly named African and Afro-American Studies (AFAM) department that featured irregular courses as the heart of the scandal.

No coaches were cited for a violation, but all charges are potential top-level counts.


The NCAA removed a charge of school athletes receiving improper benefits through access to problem AFAM courses between 2002 and 2011. That included a reference to 10 athletes exceeding a 12-hour school limit of independent study credits countable toward graduation due to the problem AFAM courses.

It also removed a reference in the institutional-control charge that mentioned counselors using the courses to help keep at-risk athletes eligible “particularly” in football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball.

UNC has ninety days to respond to the new allegation, leading ultimately to a hearing with the school’s infractions committee.