Tourism officials from all around Texas today will join the parade of organizations calling for the Legislature to flush that proposed 'bathroom bill' right down the toilet, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Called 'Texas Welcomes All,' the coalition will include Texas tourism officials, events like Austin's South by Southwest, tech firms, and tourist friendly companies like Alamo Drafthouse and C3 Presents to denounce what it calls the 'unnecessary multi billion dollar disaster for the Texas economy.'
One of the companies that will be on hand for the protest ios Austin based Silicon Labs. Company official Lori Knowles says the state's booming tech sector badly needs top graduates from colleges around the world, and Texas needs to be able to lure them away from Silicon Valley, and the attraction of Facebook and Google.
"We feel that we are competing regularly with California, particularly, for the best minds coming out fo the universities," she said. "It is critical, to us, to have an inclusive community, an inclusive state, as well as an inclusive workplace."
Meanwhile, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who is the key backer of the 'bathroom bill,' is expected to double down on his push for it today. Patrick has a news conference scheduled with his counterpart in North Carolina, which has a similar bill on the books.
Patrick has repeatedly claimed that dire warnings being raised by groups like Texas Welcomes All are overblown, and says North Carolina heard the same warnings when it passed its bill last year, and its economy remains strong.
Opponents of the 'bathroom bill' point to high profile defections from North Carolina, as well as the loss of the NBA 2017 All Star Game and a regional NCAA March Madness final series, both of which were pulled from Charlotte after North Carolina's bill passed.
The measure would restrict the use of public and school rest rooms and locker rooms to the gender which is listed on a person's birth certificate.
Supporters say male sexual predators would use locally approved Non Discrimination Ordinances which allow a transgender individual to use the rest room that matches their 'gender identity' to slip into women's restrooms and sexually molest or assault girls and women.
Opponents say there is nothing now to prevent sexual predators from entering women's restrooms.
It is not against the law in most circumstances for a man to simply utilize the facilities a woman's restroom and few public restrooms have guards on duty to check the gender of people entering. And sexual crimes ranging from voyeurism to improper photography to sexual assault are offenses whether committed in public restrooms just like if they were committed in any other place, yet the incidence of public restroom crime is so small as to be almost non-existent.
Just like Second Amendment advocates rightly point out that somebody who is determined to commit murder is unlikely to be deterred by the presence of a 'gun free zone' sign, opponents of the bathroom bill point out that a person who is determined to commit the 'A-Felony' of sexual assault is unlikely to first check local statutes to see if he can use a transgender restroom law as cover.