LARRY PITTMAN PULLS ANOTHER LARRY PITTMAN: A commenter reminded Pittman that the Supreme Court ruling settled the law on gay marriage and that the lawmaker should “get over it.” Pittman’s response: “And if Hitler had won, should the world just get over it? Lincoln was the same sort (of) tyrant, and personally responsible for the deaths of over 800,000 Americans in a war that was unnecessary and unconstitutional.” Another commenter asked Pittman to explain why he believes the Civil War, which resulted in the end of slavery, was “unnecessary.” He did not respond to the question on the Facebook page.
GREENSBORO'S "SURVIVOR" CELEBRITY OUTS TRANSGENDER MAN DURING THE SHOW: The incident on national television left Varner expressing remorse and regret to contestant Zeke Smith, to Smith’s family and friends, to the transgender community and to anyone that he offended. Jeff Probst, show host and executive producer, discussed the episode with Entertainment Weekly. “It was one of the most raw and painful studies of human behavior that has ever happened on Survivor,” he said. In the tribal council meeting, Varner spoke of deception going on. “In my ‘Survivor’ brain, my hungry, tired, warped thinking, I somehow managed to roll Zeke’s gender identity into the deception,” Varner said in the interview. In the show, Varner asked Smith, “Why haven’t you told anyone here you’re transgender?” He said that keeping it quiet was a deception. Other members of the tribe criticized Varner for outing Smith. Varner apologized. “I feel horrible,” he said on the show.
GOP LAWMAKERS WOULD FORCE UNC, NC STATE TO LEAVE ACC OVER BOYCOTTS: After the ACC boycotted North Carolina over House Bill 2, a group of Republican legislators have filed a bill that would withdraw UNC system schools from any athletic conference that boycotts the state in the future. House Bill 728 was filed this week by five GOP House members. If it becomes law, public universities would be required to immediately begin the process of leaving their athletic conference if the organization boycotts the state. Revenue from existing media rights contracts would be used to pay withdrawal penalties; the withdrawals would take place when the current contracts for media rights expire.
NC DEMS FILE BILL TO REPEAL/REPLACE "STAND YOUR GROUND" LAW: Two Democrats in the N.C. General Assembly have filed a bill that would repeal and replace the state’s “stand your ground” laws. The Gun Safety Act, House Bill 723, was filed on Monday and would repeal the law that gives North Carolina citizens the right to defend themselves with deadly force in their homes, vehicles and at work without “the duty to retreat from an intruder.” The new bill would roll back the laws to the common standard that gives citizens a “clear-cut affirmative defense” if they use deadly force to protect themselves in their homes, said Rep. Pricey Harrison, a Guilford County Democrat who sponsored the bill with Rep. Verla Insko, an Orange County Democrat.
A COLLECTION OF PREDICTABLE YET STILL CONFUSING RUSSIAN DOUBLETALK: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Trump's administration has found itself under pressure from those who "want to prevent it from curing the wounds inflicted by Barack Obama's administration and are using the Russian card in internal political struggle." Russia's hopes for a thaw in Russia-U.S. ties following Trump's election have been shattered by the congressional investigation into alleged ties between Trump's campaign associates and Russia. The tense back-and-forth over last week's deadly chemical attack in Syria has added to the strain. "It's deplorable, and we regret what is going on, but we can do little except asking to back accusations with facts," Lavrov said. "There hasn't been a single fact, although under the pressure of President Donald Trump's foes the White House has been forced to periodically make statements containing unfounded accusations against us."