The NBA is mulling pulling the All-Star Game from Charlotte over the state’s reprehensible HB2 “bathroom law.” Good – this is as it should be.
But the ESPN story cited here, penned by NBA reporter Brian Windhorst (whom I really really like), has a little problem. Not massive, but important. Here’s the quote:
After the owners meetings earlier this month, Silver acknowledged the league was mulling its options and said “the calendar is not our friend.” That was a reference to the North Carolina legislature being on summer hiatus and unable to make changes to the law as NBA has requested.
Right. The legislature is on hiatus and as such can’t change the law (assuming they wanted to, and we have zero evidence that they’re so inclined).
The problem? They fucking convened a special session just to PASS the goddamned law. Lookie:
The General Assembly went into special session earlier in the day to push through the legislation, a response to a nondiscrimination ordinance that the city of Charlotte enacted that, among other things, made it possible for transgender individuals to use the public bathroom of the sex they identify as. (emphasis mine)
Here’s how I see it. You can haul your sorry ass up to Raleigh to pass the hate law, you can haul your sorry ass to Raleigh to repeal it. It’s not that far a drive.
This is all a rhetorical exercise,of course, with a dash of Journalism 101 sprinkled in for flavor. The state has already lost a PayPal facility and no rock stars will play there, so Pat McCrory’s 14th century theocratic agenda ain’t breaking down over a basketball game.
Still, get it right. This story makes it easier for the league to buckle in the face of pragmatic realities that don’t actually exist. No excuses. No surrender.