Jerry Newcombe

Jerry Newcombe is an on-air host and senior producer for D. James Kennedy Ministries. D. James Kennedy Ministries is classified as a “Hate Group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center. On Monday Newcombe writes: “Freedom to Disagree at Risk in This Election.” Newcombe has commented that North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory is trailing in the polls. With some degree of disjointedness he follows this with:

Recently, I interviewed Tami Fitzgerald, president and founder of the North Carolina Values Coalition, for my radio show and asked her: “Why should somebody in Three Forks, Idaho, care about what’s going on in North Carolina?”

She said, “It is imperative that North Carolina retain the law that they passed if there’s ever going to be a state or another governor that will take up a religious freedom issue again. We have been battling this for almost six months now, and the Human Rights Commission, which is the national gay and lesbian group, which is headquartered in D.C., has almost taken up residence in North Carolina, to fight this state law.”

Fitzgerald added, “And so if we cannot maintain what has happened here and keep any sort of repeal efforts from happening, there will never be another governor or state legislature that will take on the Human Rights Campaign again.”

Obviously Ms. Fitzgerald is asserting that North Carolina’s law which permits, and in some cases requires, discrimination against LGBT citizens is a requirement for religious liberty. I strongly disagree. And while the Human Rights Campaign is a formidable adversary that does not speak to the discriminatory nature of the state’s House Bill 2 — the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act. Not surprisingly HB2 is underpinned by a notion of Christian privilege if not Christian supremacy.

Newcombe continues:

For my job as a TV producer for D. James Kennedy Ministries, I traveled to North Carolina (Ground Zero in the culture wars) and interviewed key leaders there.

For that program, host Dr. Frank Wright said, “Over the past few years, a powerful movement has taken shape. This movement denies the biological reality and argues that gender is a function of choice — of personal preference. And it seeks to punish all who disagree.”

It seems that every LGBT movement is powerful and some Christian is always getting punished. Moreover, this misstates the factual science in order to mis-characterize the issues for transgender citizens. No one involved in LGBT advocacy is arguing that “gender is a function of choice — of personal preference.” Quite the contrary! Gender is involuntary whether or not is is consistent with one’s chromosomes. That is the point. Indeed, medical science knows of no intervention for gender dysphoria other than support. These people think too much of themselves. No one gives a shit whether or not they agree with the science.

With the governor’s support, North Carolina had passed a law (known as House Bill 2) in March 2016 to undo Charlotte’s February 2016 ordinance that would allow men into women’s bathrooms and locker-rooms. One concerned North Carolina parent said: “The truth is, if you’re born a man, you should go to the men’s bathroom. If you’re born a woman, you should go to the women’s bathroom.”

These conservative Christians never seem to be terribly concerned with “bearing false witness.” If you omit a material fact that is the equivalent of a lie. It is a distortion. The North Carolina law also preempted all LGBT nondiscrimination ordinances including those based upon sexual orientation. Moreover, Charlotte’s ordinance did not allow men into women’s bathrooms. It insured that transgender women had access. There is a considerable difference.

Patrick Wooden, an African-American bishop whose church is in Durham opposed to mixed-sex bathrooms, said, “It’s an attack on biblical Christianity.” He noted that the Creator made humans as male and female. Two sexes. A simple swab of the mouth for DNA will prove whether one is male or female.

That may very well be. It is also irrelevant. Constitutionally we are supposed to be barred from enacting laws that recognize an establishment of religion. Wooden, a well established bigot, seems to be admitting that is precisely what North Carolina has done.

But today’s culture insists that gender identity can be fluid. For example, at last check, Facebook provides 71 separate gender identity options.

There is some fluidity in gender identity. So what? Fluidity does not mean that something is within the individual’s control.

There has been an onslaught against North Carolina since its bathroom bill was passed. Not just from the Obama administration. Hollywood and many performers are now boycotting the state. So far, they claim that millions of dollars have been lost in this boycott. Big business is also weighing in against the state, as is big sports. In July, the NBA even announced they would move their 2017 All-Star game out of Charlotte because of the law.

Big business weighed in prior to passing this discriminatory legislation. The good Christians were not listening.

Nonetheless, Fitzgerald notes the state has “one of the best climates for job creation and economic stability.”

Lt. Gov. Forest said, “I called and talked to multiple CEOs and asked them — ‘Have you read the bill?’ They said no, but they also said there were actually fearful of the Human Rights Campaign coming against them.”

Forest adds: “We’ve heard from a number of ladies who’ve been molested in bathrooms, who say [an open bathroom policy] is a horrible thing for women.”

Personally I think that Mr. Forest is full of crap but that’s just my opinion. As for those women who have been molested in bathrooms, were any at the hands of transgender women? … I didn’t think so. To suggest that this kind of legislation makes women safer is dishonest and it is not supported by the record in places where transgender access is a matter-of-fact reality.

Bishop Wooden laments: “They lie about the House Bill 2 and what it does. No one is denied any rights except factory-made women and children who may be exposed to men in the ladies room, and as a man, to be honest with you, sir, I don’t want a woman, whether she thinks she’s a man or not, in the men’s room.”

Just to be clear the intent of the Charlotte ordinance was to effect access for transgender children in public school. “Factory-made women?” What a nitwit. Furthermore, I did not know that women walk around their restroom naked. About the most exposure people usually provide is to their ankles. This is the kind of bullshit that big business will not subscribe to. Nor will most critical thinkers.

Tami Fitzgerald noted that the transgender community only comprises 3/10 of one percent of the population. “My question for the Obama administration is, What about the other 99.7 percent of the population? What about their privacy and their safety?”

That cuts both ways. Yes, the transgender community is minuscule which makes one wonder why these people are so determined to make life worse for a very fragile minority that is also very tiny. None of this makes much sense. I think it explains, in part, why James Madison included the Establishment Clause in the First Amendment. Religious literalists are rather confounding. By the way, Newcombe never did get around to explaining how our First Amendment rights to free speech are at risk in this election.

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.