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An Open Letter to Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest

Dear Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest,

While usually I would applaud the efforts of people who seek to counter discrimination and safeguard the rights of regularly marginalized groups, I would draw the line where such efforts enter the realm of insulting, backhanded, ironic attempts at digging one’s grave. In case you were wondering what the latter meant, I was referring to your gendered attempt to defend the appalling anti-LGBTQ act HB2 so graciously passed by the North Carolina General Assembly. According to your statements, you found the Charlotte Ordinance “amazingly discriminatory, against especially women and girls who no longer basically have the freedom to walk into a restroom and know that they were gonna be safe and secure in that restroom without a man walking in or a pedophile or a predator walking into that bathroom. That’s really discriminatory if you want to talk about discrimination there.”

North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory defends Dan Forest.
What is truly impressive about your aforementioned statement is the massive amount of irony, ignorance, and affront you condensed into such a short spiel. In the span of two sentences, you have demonstrated the oppressive logics of sexism and bigotry.

The first affront within your statement comes from your claim that women and girls need to be protected via HB2. As a white, straight, cis male in a position of power, you may think that such a paternalistic tone in defending women is acceptable. However, you are simply flaunting your ignorance of your own male privilege. In your misguided attempts at disguising HB2 as a bulwark of protection, you have implicitly stated that women are universally weak and depend on legislators like yourself to protect them. You fail to acknowledge that you are not defending anyone with such statements. Rather, your “defense” is demeaning, and doubly insulting given the stance of your party, the Republicans. For a group which so ardently believes in legislating women’s reproductive rights, it only makes sense you would demean them (women) as weak since your party has already denigrated them as such.

Your second blatant error in defending HB2 came along with the almost traditional argument against gender neutral bathrooms in which you claim it shall open the doors to predators, pedophiles, etc. using bathrooms as hunting grounds. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I applaud your efforts at using degrading stereotypes in order to further persecute the LGBTQ+ community. You evidently lack a clear understanding of sexual orientation or gender identity, and that you can not relegate an entire group of people to vicious stereotypes without sounding as idiotic as Donald Trump. Furthermore, there are currently twenty states around the nation with gender identity and sexual orientation anti-discrimination laws, and there has not been a single incident of sexual assault stemming from the promotion of inclusivity.

Finally, your fear mongering defense of HB2 detracts from the real discriminatory issue of the bill. While you parade the bill as some poster child for anti-discrimination and bulwark of morality, the blatant omissions and rhetoric signifies the full extent of your complete and utter disdain for the LGBTQ+ community. Within the bill, sexual orientation is unmentioned while “biological sex” is underlined. Thus, what you support is no better, if not worse, than the religious freedom bills passed in Indiana little more than a year ago. This bill that you have so ardently defended is essentially a license to dehumanize the LGBTQ+ community under a banner of moral monopoly. If you truly believed in the tenets of countering discrimination, you would realize that the logic you have employed is not only discriminatory , but a textbook case of an individual so deluded by his belief in a moral monopoly that he fails to see the benefits he reaps from his inherent privilege. Therefore, I encourage you to get to know the people who you have determined to be your enemies before you disparage them with fallible arguments and more insulting language. After all, to defeat your enemy, you must know your enemy, and given that you are a career politician and morally upright nature, I am certain you would have no problem with such duplicitous tactics.

Your local friendly neighborhood gay

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