Any American who has sought refuge from politics by escaping into the world of sports realizes now that there is no escaping politics. In the last few months, it has become completely impossible to follow sports without being lectured about the oppressive ways of the United States, and its failures to achieve the highest of today's cultural goals: "inclusion."
Leave that word in quotation marks because in the guise of "inclusion" people will be most righteously excluded. In the name of "tolerance," those condemned for intolerance will be boycotted and punished, unless they genuflect to ever-evolving "anti-discrimination" dictates.
The state of North Carolina is being tarred and feathered in the sports world because it passed a bill in March stating that the state's public schools would abide by boy-girl divisions dating back to the advent of man. The bill said, "Local boards of education shall require every multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility that is designated for student use to be designated for and used only by students based on their biological sex."
This, according to the gender-deconstructing left, is the "new Jim Crow," a cruel and usual punishment of students who reject the gender they were "assigned at birth." Obama's Department of Justice used the media-created hubbub, replete with a phantom victimology, to mandate bathroom "inclusion" on every public school in America. Liberal state and local governments banned travel to North Carolina. Hollywood studios cancelled plans to film there. Musicians cancelled their concerts. But the most dramatic action came in the sports world.
Dependent on TV contracts and corporate advertisers who now insist on political correctness, the sports leagues have fallen like dominoes. Even NASCAR issued a statement of disapproval. The NBA pulled its All-Star game out of Charlotte, North Carolina, in protest. In the last few days, the NCAA cancelled plans to hold basketball tournament games and championships in the state, and then the Atlantic Coast Conference, a league with four North Carolina athletic powerhouses, followed suit and withdrew all "neutral-site championships" from the state for this academic year.
Everyone boycotting the state is demanding that North Carolina repeal this "discriminatory" bill. But if that happens, what happens next? Is every line-toeing sports bureaucrat ready for the next round of "inclusion" demands?
For the next front of this war, let's turn to Cyd Zeigler, co-founder of the gay sports site Outsports. Zeigler briefly congratulated the NCAA for its stance but then insisted it will be "meaningless" unless the association follows his next demand: "If the NCAA is serious, it is only a matter of time before BYU (Brigham Young University) gets kicked out of the association. And every other school with an anti-LGBT policy will be removed as well." The writer singled out several religious schools for having policies "far more sinister and discriminatory than North Carolina."
Should anyone be surprised? The cultural fascists are in charge.
This czar of "inclusion" wants "Christian" schools — and he put "Christian" in quotation marks — banned from the league. The NCAA issued a statement saying that its "values of inclusion and gender equity" are "for all." Zeigler says that religious schools have to be banned, "or the NCAA is failing on their own stated commitment."
Guess who else makes the LGBTQ-Unfriendly college list? The Princeton Review blacklist includes Auburn University, University of Arkansas, Baylor University, University of Tennessee at Knoxville and Wake Forest University, among others. Will the NCAA ban them all?
What happens next? Brown University is demonstrating the latest insanity of the left. Students are distributing free tampons in every campus bathroom — including the men's rooms. This is because pads and tampons are "a necessity, rather than a luxury," and apparently not all people who menstruate are women.
L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.