HB2 Rally and Counter Rally

This past Saturday, two rallies with opposing viewpoints regarding North Carolina’s new house bill congregated just feet away from each other at the Vance Monument in downtown Asheville. The controversial bill contains legislation regarding the use of bathrooms in accordance with a person’s biological sex.

The group supporting the house bill began their rally at 10 a.m. with prayer and speeches from the organizers. Chad Nesbitt, a supporter of HB2, was one of the speakers on the pro-HB2 side of the street.

“These people over here said that transgenders are just the cream of the crop,” Nesbitt said while gesturing towards the larger counter-protest across the street. “They said that they’re just great people, and I’m sure that some are, but I want to show you something what we found this past weekend.”

HB2 supporters then unveiled a large banner with the mugshots of dozens of transgender people who were convicted of sex crimes, most of whom were from Mecklenburg County, according to Nesbitt.

Across the street, HB2 protester, Matilda Bliss, explained why she decided to attend the counter-rally that stood against the policies included in HB2.

“I’m here to assert the fact that I have name, that I am a person, and that I am a woman,” said Bliss.

Shortly after the support rally ended, the counter rally stormed across the street and gathered around the base of the Vance monument. Although both rallies were very vocal during their demonstrations, neither side became violent.