RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Hundreds of people against and for House Bill 2 will descend on downtown Raleigh to make their voices heard as the General Assembly begins a new session Monday.
When lawmakers file into the legislative building they’ll be met with plenty of opposition, but they won’t have to look far to find support.
“We’re expecting the number of attendees to be in the thousands. We know that there are churches from all over the state bringing in people by the bus loads to stand up,” said Dave Goetze, an HB 2 Supporter.
Goetze is helping the group, Return America, organize a rally to show support for lawmakers. They’ll camp out on the Halifax Mall behind the legislative building, and will host a gospel concert and speeches starting at 11 a.m.
“To show that the majority in North Carolina really does agree with the legislature for overturning the Charlotte bathroom ordinance,” said Goetz.
On the other side of the street, the NAACP is starting its Moral Monday protests of the law at 9:30 a.m.
“This bill is an anti-living wage bill. It’s an anti-worker bill. It’s an anti-family bill. It’s an anti-civil rights protection bill. It’s an anti-gay bill,” said NC NAACP Pres., Rev. William Barber.
At a press conference Friday, Barber said that HB2 is the latest example of lawmakers passing unconstitutional laws.
“Their goal is to use this poisonous brew to intoxicate many, many people’s minds in North Carolina,” said Barber.
The organization will be releasing their version of the law, holding mass sit-ins and delivering petitions. They will also be teaching how to hold peaceful protests, to keep division and passion about HB2 from growing into aggression.
“We simply exercise our first amendment rights to voice our opinion in the public square. And it is incumbent upon everybody to show us the same courtesy we show them,” said Goetze.
A group of Democrats from the General Assembly has also announced they will be filing a repeal to HB2 Monday morning. They’ll be holding a news conference at 11 a.m.