Saturday, July 23, 2016
NBA - problem with bathrooms, not with murder, torture, imprisonment, etc.
The National Basketball Association has pulled the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte, North Carolina, because of the North Carolina law governing use of bathrooms.
The NBA announced: "Since March, when North Carolina enacted HB2 and the issue of legal protections for the LGBT community in Charlotte became prominent, the NBA and the Charlotte Hornets have been working diligently to foster constructive dialogue and try to effect positive change. While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2."
The law, HB2 (House Bill 2), says that people must use the bathroom appropriate for the gender listed on their birth certificates. LGBTQ activists and supporters says the law discriminates against transgender people and might put them in danger - though the law does say the transgender people can change the gender on their birth certificates, and that institutions can have single use bathrooms that can be used by anyone.
One can debate the wording of the law, as the North Carolina legislature may indeed do when it reconvenes, but it only affects a few people and bathroom usage.
The NBA believes it is taking a principled stand.
One word comes to mind.
Principled? It's more a matter of taking a stand that is a fad these days. Moreover, the NBA is just going to move the game to another city, so it will not lose any money.
And the NBA is about money.
Just look at it's decisions in the past to have games played in China as a way to promote itself and increase its market and advertising revenues.
China is a country that is on multiple lists for human rights violations.
The country has been accused of imprisoning, torturing, and even executing innocent people and human rights and labor activists. In fact, the country has been accused of leading the world in executions. The country has been accused of using inmates for organ harvesting. The country has been accused of carrying out millions of forced abortions. The country has been accused of limiting and attempting to control churches. The country has been accused of not doing enough - or even ignoring - wide scale pollution that has resulted in cancer clusters, high rates of other illnesses, multiple deaths, and shortened lives. The country has been accused of lax labor practices that have resulted in injuries and deaths for thousands of workers. The nation has been accused of censorship of the media, including not only print, television and radio, but also of the internet and social media.
Accused of these violations and much more.
Accused and in many cases proven guilty.
Yet the NBA has no problem conducting games in China.
But it is upset over bathroom usage in North Carolina.
The bottom line may indeed be the bottom line.
The NBA can take a "principled" stand in North Carolina because it won't hurt its bottom line. But it has no problem turning its head and ignoring the massive numbers of human rights abuses in China because by doing so it might increase its profits.
I, for one, will not be watching the All-Star Game, wherever it is.
Nor will I watch NBA games this year. (To be honest, I find the NBA style of play boring anyway.)
Maybe if enough of us do so the advertisers will take notice and NBA profits will decrease.
That's the only way to get the NBA to really think about its principles.
Pax et bonum