NBA Commissioner Demands Change to NC Bathroom Law
For several weeks, the NBA has pressured North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and the Republican legislature to overturn the controversial law that would make men and women use the bathroom that coincides with the gender on their birth certificate. On Thursday, however, the league’s commissioner, Adam Silver, issued a stern warning to the Tarheel State: Change the law or lose the 2017 All-Star Game. At a press conference, Silver said that if the state wanted to keep the game in Charlotte, it would be “necessary” for them to change the law.
The NBA is not the only prominent organization to oppose the law. Online merchant services company PayPal canceled plans to open a global operations center in Charlotte shortly after the legislature passed the law. And major entertainers like Bruce Springsteen and Pearl Jam have put the kibosh on North Carolina concerts in protest to what they consider legalized discrimination.
This kind of corporate/Hollywood pressure isn’t unique to North Carolina, of course. We’ve seen the same kind of economic sword used in Georgia, Indiana, and Arkansas as a way of thwarting the will of the people. Elected representatives try to stand up for the religious freedoms of their constituents, and they are immediately smacked down by the potential economic losses that could result from the laws. You can’t even blame Republican governors who have cowered to corporate America; it’s one thing to pursue a social agenda – it’s another to let it cost your state thousands of jobs.
Before we get too high and mighty in our criticism of these Republicans, perhaps we should examine what sacrifices we are making to further the cause ourselves. Christians and conservatives used to know how to use the power of the free market to discourage companies from taking liberal positions. Now it is liberal America wielding the free market like a weapon – a powerful irony, considering how most of them feel about capitalism.
If we’re going to start gaining serious ground in the culture wars, we have to put our money where our mouths are. We have to start targeting companies that undermine democracy. We need to boycott celebrities who punish their fans for daring to live their lives with honor. We must send a message to corporate America: If it comes down to a choice between using your product and defending our beliefs, we’re going to go with our beliefs every time.