First, please let me apologize for taking so long to blog about this. I’ve tried to wrap my head around this whole HB2 thing. People have been flying off the handle about this. Some with facts and some with fiction. Trying to decipher which is which has been a bitch.
There are so many thoughts running through my head. First off, if you don’t know me, I am an unaffiliated female who believes in equality for all. So, with that being said, I am sure you know how I feel about HB2. So instead of explaining it piece by piece (my brain would explode), let’s look at the effects it has had on our state so far.
Just when things start rolling again, our legislators and governor had go and throw away not only $42,000 for an emergency session but also more job creation here in North Carolina.
As an ambassador to the City of Wilmington, it is become very difficult to welcome visitors here when folks are asking if it’s safe to be here. Seriously, lemme quote the last conversation I got about visiting North Carolina.
KATE: In light of the recent news story about NC, my wife and I will be visiting. We’re lesbian couple, will we have an issue with discrimination? Just Wondering
ME: No! There will not be any issues. Our legislators in North Carolina do NOT reflect the citizens who live here.
KATE: Thank you! That’s what I thought, but ya know I still has to check for peace of mind.
To those of us who live here, it seems like a ridiculous question because we live here and WE KNOW how welcoming this city is, but thanks to those who “represent us” we look like a bunch of haters and backward individuals.
So how is HB2 working out for us so far?
Let’s see, PayPal, Dow Chemical, the NBA, BioGen, American Airlines, Citi, Lowe’s, Wells Fargo, Apple, the NCAA, Google (just to name a few) are VERY disappointed in our leadership’s decision.
This week, large corporations like Bank of America, Cisco, Miramax and Uber signed onto a letter protesting the new law and demanding its repeal. Small businesses are also taking HB2 to task. [SOURCE]
Just today more than 15 large companies ie Reddit, eBay, Starbucks…joined the fight against North Carolina’s anti-LGBT law. [SOURCE]
HB2 is also creating uncertainty with companies as well.
Leaders from across the country have banned non-essential travel to North Carolina. San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Seattle, West Palm Beach, and New York, with more pending.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today signed an executive order banning all non-essential state travel to North Carolina. The order requires all New York State agencies, departments, boards and commissions to immediately review all requests for state funded or state sponsored travel to the state of North Carolina, and bar any such publicly funded travel that is not essential to the enforcement of state law or public health and safety. [SOURCE]
As far as film is concerned in our state, we have a little backlash, but what we don’t know is how is will affect our future.
The Hulu/Lionsgate production Crushed had one casting call the day before the emergency session took place. Rumor has it, based on a couple of crew members who were hired for the production…HB2 was the reason they packed their bags. I cannot confirm that however.
My sources in Western NC have told me that Dirty Dancing ONLY stayed because they were already too vested with locations and talent timelines and had made a commitment to film there. Otherwise they would have hit the road as well. Again, however, I cannot confirm it.
As you probably have seen Producer/Director Rob Reiner stated immediately after HB2 passed, he will never bring a production to North Carolina as long as this bill is in place. He encouraged his peers in the film industry to do the same. [SOURCE]
Meanwhile not all in the General Assembly are backing the bill. Senator Jeff Jackson has taken to social media.
And our favorite red head Rep. Susi Hamilton is just as upset about the outcome of HB2.
And this…good Lord: “The people of North Carolina want to talk about roads and economic development and jobs and that’s where I’m going to focus my attention, not on ridiculous restroom and locker room policies that some people are trying to force onto the private sector,” McCrory said. [SOURCE]
I can’t help but think of a school yard taunt: “Quit talking about yourself!” Hate to tell you this, McCrory, but the people of North Carolina are just getting started. The Gov’na certainly made his bed, but he doesn’t want to lie in it any longer…
And it is also apparent, McCrory has no idea what’s in the bill they passed in a 12 hour period.
NC Attorney General Roy Cooper, who is running against McCrory, is asking all those who are ashamed of HB2 to sign a petition on ShameonMcCrory.com
Every hour, there are more companies, cities and states standing up against HB2.
In conclusion, I cannot stress to those who don’t live here that we in North Carolina want you to know our legislators DO NOT reflect who we are as citizens of North Carolina. We are welcoming. We are warm. We. Are. Not. This.
Thanks for giving us all the headlines leaders of North Carolina…