CNN Senior Political Analyst David Gergen denounced North Carolina’s “bathroom law,” among other policies as signals that “North Carolina is no longer a pioneer in advancing people of color, people who are gay, people who are living on the margins” during a speech at Elon University in Elon, North Carolina on Saturday.
Gergen said that “forces of extremism have asserted themselves, representing a sharp break from our past. After decades of struggle to become a just and fair people, we are sliding backwards.” And that “It is time to raise our voices against this darkness. … [A]nd preserve the best of who we are as a people.”
After discussing the state’s history on racial discrimination and Jim Crow laws, Gergen stated that “just a few years ago” “dark clouds arrived.” And “a new, mean-spirited extremist politics.”
He added that “signals” sent from the state’s capital have sent the message that “North Carolina is no longer a pioneer in advancing people of color, people who are gay, people who are living on the margins. Instead, many here want to go back, far back to a darker time.” Gergen criticized many North Carolina policies, such as a flatter income tax, voting laws, abortion restrictions, a constitutional amendment forbidding same-sex marriage, refusing federal Medicaid funding, and the state’s “bathroom law.” He further denounced the “bathroom law” as seeming to punish transgender people, a one-size-fits-all solution imposed on localities by the state legislature, and “backward-thinking leadership.”
Gergen continued that he wished the federal government had stayed out of the issue, and that people in the states could have come up with better solutions on their own, but predicted that unless the law is repealed, it will hurt the state economically.
He concluded by conceding that many probably disagree with him, but that disagreements shouldn’t turn people into enemies, and urged people to work to find common ground and respect different opinions.
(h/t Huffington Post)
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