NBA Commissioner Adam Silver threatens to pull next year’s All-Star Game from Charlotte if North Carolina doesn’t change its bathroom law by the end of this summer.
“I know I speak on behalf of our owners, our teams and our players,” Silver told reporters on Thursday. “I think they all feel very strongly that this [diversity] is a core principle of our league, and that where we choose to celebrate something like an All-Star Game, that those values should be honored.”
North Carolina’s House Bill 2 restricts use of multiple-use public bathrooms in government buildings to people who match the sex of the insignia found on the entrances. The law allows private businesses to devise policies it sees fit for restrooms. Transgenders seek to use the restrooms that match how they identify rather than match their sex.
Despite identifying summer’s end as a “critical” date in the decision-making process, Silver strangely maintained he imposes no firm deadline.
“There is no line in the sand,” he claimed. “We intentionally didn’t want to draw lines in the sand.”
The commissioner, who presides over two single-sex leagues, says he recently met with business leaders from the Tar Heel State to discuss what he sees as discrimination.
“I’d say there is absolutely strong interest in trying to work something out,” Silver told reporters at a State of the NBA-style address before Game One of the NBA Finals. “Both sides of the issue recognize, however heartfelt their views are, that the current state of being is causing enormous economic damage to the state. I think they realize that we very much would like to play next year’s All-Star Game in North Carolina, as I’ve said before.”
Though North Carolina’s law restricting the men’s room to males and the ladies’ room to females threatens the All-Star Game in Charlotte, China’s forced abortions and crackdown on Christianity does not jeopardize the two preseason games scheduled there in October by Silver. Why the commissioner’s protest involved pulling the midseason exhibition from Charlotte rather than giving back all of the government funds used to build an arena for the Charlotte Bobcats or forcibly relocating the team because of the inconvenience to the legions of transgender basketball fans remains unclear.
“We, of course, have a team in Charlotte, North Carolina,” Silver noted. “So we as a league want to make sure there is an environment where the LGBT community feels protected down in North Carolina.”