Gov. Roy Cooper (D-N.C.) signed an executive order Thursday that forces businesses throughout North Carolina to allow men to use women’s restrooms – as well as permit women in men’s restrooms.

The left-leaning governor’s LGBT-friendly order officially makes “sexual orientation” and “gender identity or expression” protected classes, and businesses that do not comply can suffer the consequences financially.

“The order applies to employment in state government and the provision of government services, including programs and services concerning public safety, health and welfare,” LifeSiteNews reported. “In order to be awarded a state contract or grant, a business will have to comply with the pro-transgender order. Public facilities must also allow men to use women’s restrooms in accordance with their ‘gender identity.’”

Power grab for LGBT

NC Values Coalition (NCVC) Executive Director Tami Fitzgerald says the newly signed order is a gross display of state control.

“[The order is] a massive power grab, with sweeping changes that only the Legislative Branch has the authority to enact,” Fitzgerald asserted, according to LifeSiteNews. “Governor Cooper has betrayed the people of North Carolina with an Executive Order that not only allows boys and men into girls’ and women’s showers and bathrooms, but also forces private businesses to adopt sweeping LGBT privileges.”

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The new order flies in the face of HB 142 – legislation that Cooper signed into law earlier this year.

“[HB 142] kept in place longstanding laws that required that showers and bathrooms be used in accordance with one’s sex on their birth certificate,” Fitzgerald explained.

It was also noted that HB 142 was intended to be a compromise of HB 2 – the bathroom privacy bill in North Carolina that drew national attention.

“The left was upset that Cooper didn’t sign a full repeal of HB 2,” LifeSiteNews’s Claire Chretien pointed out. “HB 142 weakened, but still left in place some key parts of HB 2. It also prevents cities from passing pro-LGBT ‘public accommodation’ nondiscrimination laws until 2020.”

NC Values Coalition – a pro-family group – issued a warning to citizens in the Tar Heel State that Christians and other business owners with family values are essentially being forced to choose between living by the convictions of their faith or losing government contracts with Cooper’s new executive order.

“Bathroom privacy and safety are sacrificed under Roy Cooper’s bathroom plan, which is more akin to Harvey Weinstein’s bathroom plan,” an NCVC press release reads. “Anyone who has or seeks a government contract with the state or receive government benefits – like churches and religious organizations – will have to adopt internal operating policies that favor and give preference to people who are gay, lesbian or transgender.”

Equality or privilege?

In the order, the landmark Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decision Obergefell v. Hodges was cited in an attempt to justify its reasoning, along with a study published by the National Center for Transgender Equality.

“The majority of federal courts that have addressed the issue to date have held that discrimination on the basis of transgender status is unlawful,” Cooper’s order states. “It is necessary to provide state and local government actors with clarity and guidance regarding existing laws and policies prohibiting discrimination, harassment and retaliation.”

According to Fitzgerald, the new law is elevating the LGBT community above other citizens.

“[North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein is] elevating LGBT privileges above the rights of common everyday people to privacy and safety in bathrooms and showers,” the pro-family leader contended. “[Stein is] failing to defend the laws of the state.”

Even though the wording of the executive order claims that it is “not inconsistent” with existing North Carolina state and federal laws, Fitzgerald discounts that argument and insists that the legislation will not go unchallenged.

“It is despicable, and the voters of N.C. will hold [Cooper and Stein] accountable,” Fitzgerald assured.

Demanding more

Not satisfied enough, the LGBT lobby insisted that Cooper’s executive order is not good enough, demanding that HB 142 be struck from the books to give the LGBT community free range in all restrooms designated specifically for men and women restrooms across the state.

“[It’s just] a step in the right direction,” Equality North Carolina Interim Director Matt Hirschy stressed – according to LifeSiteNews – not fully accepting Cooper’s concession to the LGBT rights movement.

National Center for Transgender Equality Executive Director Nara Keisling was a little more direct about her disappointment that Cooper did not also get rid of HB 142 while signing the pro-LGBT order.

“It’s not nearly enough,” Keisling insisted, according to LifeSiteNews.

The lead plaintiff in one of North Carolina’s major transgender lawsuits demanded that the courts go a step further and fully accommodate the LGBT community.

“Nothing can make up for the cruel and senseless attacks transgender people have faced in North Carolina, but I am hopeful that the court will agree to clarify the law so that we can live our lives in less fear,” Joaquín Carcaño – a transgender man who led the legal charge to tear down laws in North Carolina established to protect women and children – told Reuters.

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