Matt Hirschy, director of advancement at Equality NC, said Moore’s actions in college are reflective of North Carolina’s past with LGBTQ rights.
“And it also tells that we still have a lot of work to do and it doesn’t matter what year it is, some things still haven’t changed,” Hirschy said. “Even though public opinion and Supreme Court rulings maintain sometimes an opinion that all of our work is done.”
Junior Andrew Brennen said he is not surprised by Moore’s history at UNC and that there are parallels to these actions in the General Assembly’s Republican representatives.
“I will say that the University community does a good job pushing back some of those things, and really trying to further rights for marginalized communities,” Brennen said.
Violence has marred UNC’s LGBTQ community.
The LAMBDA, the Carolina Gay and Lesbian Association’s newsletter, had article topics such as “Homophobia on the Rampage.”
“Past examples include attacks with baseball bats, thefts of CGLA banners, and hours of anti-gay pit preaching,” the Lambda newsletter reported in Dec. 1987.
Hirschy said historical discrimination shows how much advancement the LGBTQ community has made.
“Particularly as we look at striking down of anti-sodomy laws, and beyond that the pro-LGBTQ advances and the passing of proactive legislation that prevents discrimination,” Hirschy said.
Christy Mallory, the state and local policy director at research center The Williams Institute, said in an email that discrimination against the LGBTQ community was often a result of private negative attitudes.
“There are still examples of discrimination occurring against LGBT people, including by law enforcement/the criminal justice system, particularly against vulnerable subpopulations of the LGBT community such as people of color and trans people,” Mallory said.
LGBTQ rights continue to be controversial. For example, some think the partial repeal of HB2 does not go far enough.
Junior Gentry Fitch said he supports the compromise on HB2 because the Republican-majority legislature made it impossible for Governor Roy Cooper to fully repeal HB2.
“Society and people adapt and move slowly...” Fitch said. “If we want to take steps to ameliorate this problem, we have to be willing to compromise on these pieces.”
Hirschy said he disagrees with the compromise of repealing HB2.
“I think that state lawmakers who claim to be allies have a long way to go to make a law in North Carolina that truly protects LGBTQ folks from discrimination that doesn’t just appease radical lawmakers and their allies who really wish to openly discriminate against LGBTQ folks,” Hirschy said.