North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory issued an executive order Sunday requiring separate restrooms for straight and LGBT people.
McCrory's directive also bans clothing with what he called "gay colors" to be worn by boys in public elementary and secondary schools in the state. The Republican governor referred to pink, chartreuse, teal, and magenta, in particular, as "gateway colors" for young boys who might have an inclination toward homosexuality.
"The state of North Carolina has an obligation to force people to be the way they were intended," McCrory said in a statement, "whether they like it or not."
He called the executive order a response to the backlash against his state since it passed a law earlier this month restricting bathroom access for transgendered people.
HB2, the so-called "naughty potty" law, requires the transgendered to use bathrooms that match the gender on their birth certificates. It also eliminated anti-discrimination laws based on sexual orientation.
Critics have called it the most extreme "anti-LGBT measure in the country."
More than a hundred business leaders signed a letter to McCrory objecting to the law and pledging not to make any new investments in the state until it was repealed.
Pay Pal canceled plans for a global operations center in Charlotte. Bruce Springsteen, among other entertainers, canceled scheduled concerts in the state. Mayors and governors of cities and states, including New York and Washington, have banned most state-sponsored travel to North Carolina.
HB2 became official on April 1. Response to the passage of the law was initially slow because, according to one LGBT activist, it was assumed it was a practical joke.
In signing his executive order, McCrory reiterated his earlier statement that he was taking action "to affirm and improve the state's commitment to privacy and equality."
This, he said, is why he ordered separate bathrooms for straight and LBGT people. The governor also called for -- though did not yet require -- separate seating on buses, in theaters, and in restaurants, and separate schools, swimming pools, and drinking fountains for the LBGT.
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