An Associated Press report puts the economic damage to North Carolina from its laws discriminating against LGBT people at more than $3.76 billion over a dozen years.
Note that Arkansas law is almost as discriminatory as that in North Carolina — with exemptions of LGBT people from the state civil rights law; with a law that allows discrimination by any who claim a religious pretext, and with a law that prevents local ordinances to protect LGBT people (recently enforced against Fayetteville by the Arkansas Supreme Court.) All that’s lacking is a law specifically barring restroom use by transgender people seeking facilities that match their identity. But at least two efforts are pending in the legislature this week — one by Sen. Linda Collins-Smith to specifically mirror the North Carolina law and another bill by Rep. Bob Ballinger aimed at the same outcome, masquerading as a bill to toughen the existing indecent exposure law. It is designed to discourage by threat of prosecution use of facilities by those with a different birth gender.