Good morning, folks.
Tuesday’s news, as usual, is mostly about a declining North Carolina in a post-HB 2 world.
1. Quadruple losses: That’s what the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau reports for Wake County in the last seven days, thanks to guess what.
From The News & Observer:
Meanwhile, in Durham….
The visitors bureau reported April 11 that four groups had canceled plans to hold events in Wake – pulling more than $732,000 in estimated spending – because of House Bill 2, which some say discriminates against the transgender community, gays and lesbians.
Two other events have been canceled, and another has been scaled back since then, the bureau reported in an update Monday. The bureau estimates that the changes cost the county an additional $2.4 million in economic spending, bringing the total of estimated losses to $3.1 million because of HB2.
2. Duke University’s leaders call for the repeal of HB 2. As a private institution, Duke is not required to enforce the discriminatory law. The university already released a statement last month to assure students that “activities on its campus will not be impacted by a new state law that prevents local governments from opening bathrooms for people to use based on their gender identity. Duke University values every individual. We are committed to equality, diversity and inclusion, which makes us a better and stronger community. For that reason, we deplore any effort to deny any person the protection of the law because of sexual orientation or gender identity.”
As reported by The Washington Post, Monday’s statement from Duke focused on HB2’s economic consequences for North Carolina and its universities.
The signers of the statement end by urging “a full repeal of HB2.”
Three officials — university President Richard Brodhead, Provost Sally Kornbluth and Chancellor for Health Affairs A. Eugene Washington — wrote, in part: “Scholars from states and municipalities that have imposed bans on government travel to North Carolina have been unable to travel to Duke to continue vital ongoing research partnerships or attend academic conferences. Prospective students, faculty and staff, as well as Duke alumni planning visits to campus, have voiced concerns about whether they will find a hospitable environment in North Carolina.”
3. Gender compliance officers are hired in Oriental. OK, not really. That’s just a satirical story published by the local TownDock.net blog, and it’s become a social media hit.
WRAL took notice:
Funny stuff. Here’s a link to the original post.
TownDock.net focuses mostly on local weather reports, events and comings and goings in this soundside community. But in a “world exclusive news extra,” Town Dock detailed the challenge for the community’s sole public bathroom once HB2 dictated that “users of public restrooms use bathrooms corresponding to the gender on their birth certificate.”
Town Dock’s parody claimed that Gov. Pat McCrory had approved a $6 million program so that communities could hire “Gender Compliance Officers” to make sure the law is enforced.
The article includes photos of “Compliance Officer Kim Daniels” at work checking birth certificates and, for those who can’t produce them, performing a more intimate verification before users can step into the bathroom.
4. ” A Jesus man.” That’s the kinda dude that turns on “Duck Dynasty” dum-dum Phil Robertson. Therefore, that makes Phil the kinda guy of whose jib evangelist Franklin Graham likes the cut.
You see, there was this big NASCAR race in Texas recently, and … aw, crap, let’s just let The Charlotte Observer tell the stupid story:
I pray Father that we put a Jesus man in the White House.
The North Carolina-based Graham has come to the defense of “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson. The reality TV show’s patriarch is getting some heat for using his prayer before a recent NASCAR race to call for America to elect a Christian man president this year. Or, as he put it, “I pray Father that we put a Jesus man in the White House.”
That’s how Redneck Tarzan said it. Verrrrrr-fuggin’-batim.
OK, we’re gonna need some music to set the proper mood for the rest of this “news” item.