North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) may have just signed legislation that will restrict the ability of women to get safe and legal abortions, but he's not a monster.
On Tuesday, the governor ventured outside the gates of his mansion with four security guards and singled out one pro-choice activist to give her a plate of cookies.
"I was like, 'Me?' and he nodded," Chapel Hill resident Jamie Sohn recalled to the News and Observer.
“These are for you. God bless you, God bless you, God bless you," she said McCrory told her after his security guards stopped traffic.
Sohn was too stunned to reply.
But she and her fellow activists wasted no time sliding the cookies back under the gate of the governor's mansion with a note: "Hey Pat, that was rude. You wouldn't give cookies to a dude."
The women, who had been organized by Planned Parenthood Action Fund of Central NC, were dressed in 1950s-era styles to make a point about the regressive nature of Republican policies in North Carolina. They had been protesting outside of McCrory's home with the hopes of meeting with the governor.
"Next to sandwiches, cookies are probably the most potent edible symbol of the belief that women's role is to shut up, give up their ambitions, and return to the kitchen," Amanda Marcotte wrote for Slate. "While it's unlikely that McCrory was deliberately trying to tell the protesters to know their place, that's how the gesture reads."
In a statement, the governor's office said that "[s]ometimes a plate of cookies is just a plate of cookies."
Last week, McCrory signed a bill that could force all but one abortion clinic in North Carolina to close after promising during the election to impose no restrictions on a woman's right to choose.
According to WRAL, the Republican governor claimed that he had not broken his campaign promise because the bill does not "further restrict" access to abortion services.
But state Rep. Paul "Skip" Stam (R), who supported the new law, undermined McCrory's claim when he was recently asked on a local TV program if the effort "was purely an attempt to limit abortions as severely as you can in North Carolina."
"Well, it's partly that, but certainly not mostly that," Stam replied.
Watch this video from WSOC, broadcast July 30, 2013.