New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s opposition to North Carolina’s commonsense bathroom law may keep one New York community college’s baseball team from going to the national championships. While Cuomo’s office tried to distance itself from the issue, the college insists that his injunction leaves it no choice. Tragically, the governor will ban travel to a state, but still travels himself to Cuba and China, which have a much worse record on LGBT issues.
In March, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed House Bill 2, a law that declared multiple-stall restrooms in public facilities should be divided on the basis of biological sex. Shortly afterward, nearly 100 business leaders signed a letter rebuking the state and asking that they rescind the law. Cuomo responded by banning non-essential state travel to North Carolina.
This brings us to Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) in upstate New York, and its baseball team this season. It has a 24-8 record, and player Kyle Bestle told CBS News, “I think we have a real shot at going to the national championship.” If they win the sub-regional championships this weekend, and the regional championships next weekend, they should be able to compete nationally.
Except they won’t be able to. Not because of player injury, not because of foul play, and not because of anything any player did. This is when Gov. Cuomo’s ban comes back to bite him. When you cancel all “non-essential” travel to North Carolina, you also implicitly ban a state team from competing in a national championship.
A spokesman from Cuomo’s office said that the ban does not pertain to community colleges, since they are not considered state entities. But the college’s administrators say they will nevertheless abide by the order. “We’re standing with Governor Cuomo and with New York’s many state agencies, departments and commissions that are doing the same,” the college said.
Upstate New York Republicans took advantage of the situation. The Rensselaer County GOP condemned the move on Facebook, attacking the “unnecessary political controversy.”
State Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin rebuked Cuomo for “political grandstanding.” McLaughlin condemned the governor’s double standard between North Carolina and Cuba. “Cuomo goes to Cuba and embraces and praises a Communist dictator that jails and/or kills gay people…but a baseball team can’t go to North Carolina because of a law that says use the bathroom of your gender.”
“The hypocrisy of Cuomo never ceases to amaze me,” McLaughlin concluded. As the New York Daily News reported, gay people in Cuba “do not enjoy basic liberties like freedom of speech or religion. They cannot join an independent labor union or vote.” Furthermore, the government routinely harasses homosexuals for their orientation.
“Gays are routinely picked up en masse on the streets, beaten, jailed indefinitely,” Herb Sosa of the Hispanic LGBT organization Unity Coalition told left-wing American magazine In These Times.
Next Page: The community college itself just sent administrators to China, which also has a horrible gay discrimination record.
Cuomo traveled to Cuba and is planning a future venture to China, another country with a worse record of LGBT discrimination than North Carolina. Administrators at the community college also took a 10-day China trip to recruit students.
While the People’s Republic of China decriminalized homosexual practice in 1997 and removed same-sex attraction from the list of official disorders in 2001, it has no protections for LGBT people, and legal discrimination varies from province to province. The pro-gay group OutRight Action International reports that the government actively restricts homosexuality in media and social media and that “LGBT people continue to suffer from police harassment and arbitrary detention.”
But, by all means, focus your efforts against a law that says transgender people need to use single-stall restrooms in schools.
Cuomo is not backing down — quite the reverse. As the North Carolina situation goes into the courts, the New York governor announced he will file an amicus brief seeking to overturn House Bill 2. He also banned all non-essential travel to Mississippi on behalf of a religious freedom bill.
It is a tragedy that these college boys will not be able to compete in the championships merely because of political grandstanding, but the liberal push on LGBT issues is likely to produce many more public relations disasters. Democrats don’t care, so long as they can have their cake and eat it too.