The N.C. General Assembly is wasting no time introducing a litany of bills that would squelch civil rights and set the state back decades. It’s at times like this that a sluggish, inefficient government seems appealing.
Among the veritable murderer’s row of boneheaded bills are the following:
- ?House Joint Resolution 494, also known a s the “Defense of Religion Act,” which boldly asserts a questionable interpretation of the First, Tenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution by claiming states have the right to declare official religions.
- ?Senate Bill 658, which would effectively overturn the Board of Trustees’ decision to allow gender-neutral housing on campus, thereby putting students in danger. Look for more from us on why this is so wrong in Friday’s paper.
?* The ominously titled Senate Bill 666, which would bar parents from receiving tax exemptions for dependent children who are registered to vote elsewhere. Charging people money to vote where they live seems a bit antidemocratic.
- ?Senate Bill 306, which passed the Senate Wednesday, would repeal the Racial Justice Act that allowed defendants to use statistics indicating racial bias to avoid the death penalty.
?* And finally, House Bill 298, which would lift the current legal requirement that utilities must derive 12.5 percent of their sales from renewable energy by 2021. The General Assembly is really doubling down on its effort to quicken global warming. Last year, after all, it voted to prevent the Division of Coastal Management from figuring out how quickly ocean levels are rising until July 2016.