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Christian Action League opposes gender-neutral university housing

The N.C. Christian Action League objects to the UNC-Chapel Hill trustees' decision last week to allow male and female students to share dorm suites and canpus apartments, saying it would be a special privelidge for gay, lesbian and transgender students.

The policy was adopted after students said they were made to feel uncomforable in their suites or dorm rooms because of their sexual orientation.

An article in the Christian Action League newsletter quotes the Rev. Mark Creech, the group's executive director,  saying that gender neutral housing amounted to special protections for people who choose alternative lifestyles, and was costly to the larger society.

Tami Fitzgerald, director of the N.C. Values Coalition, said readers should urge trustees to change their minds.

"The UNC Board of Trustees is bending over backward to please the homosexual lobby - a group that represents only about 3 percent of the population - without regard for the consequences..." she told the Christian Action League. "To make matters worse, our tax dollars subsidize the University of North Carolina system."

Jones wants video poker on the table

Rep. Earl Jones is trying his luck at video poker.

A House committee began discussing but took no action on a bill sponsored by Jones that would legalize video poker in North Carolina, while giving the state 20 percent of the gaming profits. The state banned the machines in 2006.

The legislature is being pushed by recent court decisions falling on the side of video poker, saying the state cannot ban the games while allowing them on Native American reservations. The case is being reviewed by higher courts.

Proponents argue that such games could bring the state an extra $480 million in revenue and support about 35,000 jobs in the state at a time when money is needed. But others say the practice is deplorable and more addictive than other forms of gambling such as the lottery.

"Economic times have changed, and that's probably the primary reason for the consideration of legislation like this," said Mark Creech of the Christian Action League. "But we can make compromises that are all together too costly."

Jones, a Greensboro Democrat, disagreed, saying that the state already supports one form of gambling, the lottery, and that video poker is not substantially different. "The political liability for the state supporting gaming has already been tested," he said.

Bullying pushed to Thursday

The state House will push to Thursday a vote on a anti-bullying bill that would include gay students in a list of potential harassment targets. It had been scheduled for yesterday, then today.

Rep. Rick Glazier, a Fayetteville Democrat, said the House is trying to coordinate its vote with the Senate, which has put off its vote to Thursday.

The anti-bullying bill would require local school sytems to develop policies to combat bullying. At issue is a description of bullying targets that includes "sexual orientation" as a reason school children might be targets.

Socially conservative groups oppose the bill, saying it is a way to get gays into state law as a protected class. Senators have reported receiving hundreds of cards and emails from opponents in the last few weeks. The Christian Action League this week asked people on its mailing list to keep up the pressure on senators.

The bill's supporters deny the claim that it would give certain groups special rights, saying that specific language guarantees that no new protected classes will be created.

Supporters say about two dozen state school systems that have adopted anti-bullying policies similar to the legislative proposal.

Senate backs up on bullying

The Senate will not vote on a controversial anti-bullying proposal today that references sexual orientation, said a senator who worked on the bill.

Sen. Doug Berger, a Franklin County Democrat, said he expected the compromise that had been crafted to be dropped from today’s schedule.

"We just don’t have enough votes at this time," Berger said.

Socially conservative groups, including the N.C. Family Policy Council and the Christian Action League, were working hard to scuttle the proposal, which includes references to sexual orientation, masculinity and femininity.

Rep. Rick Glazier said before the House met that he was confident there were enough House votes to pass the bill, but heard that the Senate was not going to vote on it today.

The question, said Glazier, was whether the House and Senate should run the bill at the same time.

"People understand the bill very well over here," the Fayetteville Democrat said of the House.

He asked during the House session to push a vote on the proposal to the end of the meeting.

Charges shock

The Char-O's Jack Betts, writing about the reaction to charges of aiding and abetting prostitution against former legislator Coy Privette, reviews Privette's conservative credentials.

He was associated with many conservative social causes over the years and was regarded as a personable, voluble advocate for many causes and against all things sinful. His cheerful greetings in the halls of the legislature were always prefaced by "Hello, Brother" and accompanied by as warm and engaging a smile as you're likely to see in this old state.

Privette was suspended from the Christian Action League presidency late Thursday, the Char-O reports.

Former legislator charged

Former state Rep. Coy Privette of Kannapolis was charged today with six counts of aiding and abetting prostitution, the Salisbury Post is reporting.

Privette, a Republican, is a Cabarrus County commissioner and president of the N.C. Christian Action League.

The Salisbury Post says Privette appeared at the Rowan County Magistrate's Office today and was released on a written promise to appear in court on Aug. 22.

The Charlotte Observer is reporting that the misdemeanor charges stemmed from an investigation into a forged check at First Charter Bank in Kannapolis. Also charged was Tiffany Denise Summers, 32, of Salisbury. She was charged with six counts of prostitution.

Summers has been convicted of drug, prostitution and possessing stolen goods, according to court documents.

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