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Arizona bill would jail transgender people for using the ‘wrong’ bathroom

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Republican legislators in Arizona are attempting to pass legislation that forces transgender people to only use public restrooms, dressing rooms and showers associated with the gender listed on their birth certificate. According to the Associated Press, conservative lawmakers are proposing the legislation in response to a human rights bill passed by the city of Phoenix which prohibits gender identity discrimination in public accommodations.

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Republican state Rep. John Kavanagh of Phoenix is leading the charge to make it a criminal offense for transgender people to use public restrooms not associated with their birth gender.

According to U.K. paper The Independent, violation of the new law would be a class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by fines as high as $4,000 and up to six months in prison.

Gay state Rep. Tom Simplot told the Independent, “This kind of extremist legislation is exactly what brings criticism to Arizona and compromises our work to make Phoenix an accepting and competitive city.”

Activists say that opponents of the human rights bill’s choice to characterize their legislation as “the bathroom bill” is inflammatory, as is their decision to stoke fears of sexual predation.

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Simplot said the bill would criminalise the “very nature” of being transgender, adding “they’re creating a problem that doesn’t exist.”

UPDATE: Raw Story spoke with Mara Keisling, director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. Keisling said the new legislation “clearly has to do with the anti-discrimination law” enacted in Phoenix, “which is about people being able to work, people being able to be fully part of society.”

“These (anti-discrimination) laws are in effect in more than 160 cities and 16 states,” said Keisling, and that the problem of sexual predation on minors that the discriminatory policy alleges to address, “isn’t happening anywhere. It just doesn’t occur. It’s one of the terrible things that opponents of equality always raise in hopes of scaring people.”

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[image via Shutterstock]

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‘Stand with Hong Kong’ shirts fill the stands at Nets game as NBA is protested for China subservience

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The National Basketball Association was protested on Friday for bowing to pressure from China.

The NBA has been harshly criticized for standing by the oppressive regime instead of standing in solidarity with the pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong.

"Producer and activist Andrew Duncan bought 300 tickets to tonight's Nets vs Raptors game and is hosting hundreds of Chinese pro-Democracy activists to protest the NBA," New York magazine correspondent Yashar Ali reported Friday. "They're all wearing 'Stand With Hong Kong' T-shirts."

Photos from the protest:

1. Producer and activist Andrew Duncan bought 300 tickets to tonight's Nets vs Raptors game and is hosting hundreds of Chinese pro-Democracy activists to protest the NBA.

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Trump polling close friends over whether he should fire Mulvaney: report

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President Donald Trump is considering firing Mick Mulvaney, his acting White House chief of staff and director of the Office of Management and Budget, The Atlantic reported Friday.

"Mick Mulvaney's job was in danger even before his disastrous press conference yesterday, and his equally disastrous attempt to walk that performance back," The Atlantic reported. "The fumble could not have been more poorly timed: According to multiple current and former White House officials, many of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to relay private conversations, Trump has been steadily souring on Mulvaney for weeks."

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Michael Moore predicts Mick Mulvaney will get into Heaven after confessing Trump’s quid pro quo

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Academy Award-winning filmmaker Michael Moore predicted acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney will ascend to Heaven in the afterlife during a Friday interview on MSNBC's "The Beat" with Ari Melber.

The host played a clip of Mulvaney admitting Trump's quid pro quo while seeking foreign election assistance from Ukraine.

"This man obviously is going to be admitted into Heaven," Moore said. "You know, he told the truth."

"If there was a movie version of this, somebody stuck him with a needle just before he walked out onto the stage there, a truth serum needle, and he just went on and on saying, 'Yeah, that’s what we do. Yeah, of course.' Essentially admitting there is a quid pro quo. In fact, there are many quid pro quos."

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