Readers responded with a variety of emotions after Charlotte City Council defeated LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination ordinances on March 2 (goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com/34468/). The vote, an editorial over the “compromise” package stripping out restrooms (goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com/34484) and separately reported incidents of harassment by anti-LGBT activists of transgender people at the local government center (goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com/34460/) resulted in hundreds of comments on our website. Here are some of these responses.
On the Council vote
I’m sad to see it fail, but as a gay man I wouldn’t want to see it pass without the strongest possible transgender protections anyways which seemed to be what that amendment was about. Step one is to try to change minds and win the vote. If that fails, step two can always be to vote out the minds you couldn’t change in favor of equality.
— Jake Gellar-Goad, March 3, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com
Although this doesn’t affect me in any way, I am very disappointed that this important piece of legislation failed. To me it doesn’t say much for the humanity of the present council members. Hopefully the public will see fit to replace these individuals who refuse to accept the facts of life.
— Carole Hart, March 3, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com
On the ‘compromise package’
I’m sorry but I disagree. Before this vote we had no protections. Transgender people had to be careful about restroom use. We could have had protection for everyone with the exception of transgendered peoples bathroom use unresolved. Today nobody has any protection and transgendered people will still need to be careful when using the restroom. That is not progress. If I wanted my representatives to be inflexible and not find common ground I would have voted for Republicans. I believe that progress sometimes takes many steps to get to the end result. If we refuse to move forward when we don’t get all we want, then progress will be long coming. If you don’t believe the restroom issue will be resolved down the road, then you must believe your community doesn’t care about transgender people. I will continue to fight for their inclusion, and I think many in the community will too. Accepting a compromise does not end the debate and does not stop progress. It is one step further towards the ultimate goal. I believe these people made a mistake that will hurt our community for years. I’m sorry for that.
— John Bean, March 4, Facebook
No. The amendment was not an attempt at a compromise. It was not a “restroom issue.” It is not protection of anyone when it is protection of everyone “except…” It was an act of discrimination behind a filthy glass veil of progress. If we refuse to stand in solidarity with all members of the community we are no better than those who attempt to oppress any in our community. I’m glad it means that “nobody has any protection” if it means that a collective urgency ensures the continued fight for any group that would otherwise be othered in the name of progress. “We’ve got ours… we’ll come back for you.”
— Micah Paul, March 5, Facebook
On the harassment
What these people need to see is a very masculine trans man going into the women’s restroom. And when confronted, he should say, “Hey, this is what you wanted.”
— Z, March 2, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com
Creepy old man stalking kids, hanging around outside ladies restrooms and they’re the perverts? Welcome to Alabama on steroids and the pottie police. Lost the marriage equality need a new shtick to fill the declining money grab. Mother and trans girl should file police report for harassment and stalking. Lovely city you have there one, I’ll never set foot in again.
— Melanie, March 2, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com
The fear that imaginary perverts will suddenly start lurking in washrooms pretending to be women is completely ridiculous, especially when you consider that the same religions that are so concerned about this have many real perverts lurking in their organizations pretending to be priests etc. Go deal with real problems and leave us alone!!
— commonsense, March 3, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com
I’m much more concerned about a 60-something male adult with a stalking conviction harassing a minor as they come out of the restroom while their accomplice records it on video.
— Cheshire, March 3, goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com