Mar 30, 2017

Transgender advocates not satisfied with repeal of NC bathroom law

Ted Eytan via Flickr CC

Governor Roy Cooper, a Democrat, today signed a repeal of North Carolina's controversial transgender bathroom law, which had forced people at government-run buildings to use bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to the genders on their birth certificates. The repeal was a compromise measure, though. It included a provision barring local ordinances making further accommodations for transgender people until 2020.

Cooper said it wasn't the perfect deal, but it was "the best deal we could get":

For over a year now, House Bill 2 has been a dark cloud hanging over our great state. It has stained our reputation. It has discriminated against our people and it has caused great economic harm in many of our communities.

But advocates for LGBTQ and transgender rights like the Human Rights Campaign and the ACLU are not satisfied and are tweeting that the bill doesn't protect transgender people from discrimination. They're calling for a full repeal.

Basketball's role: The ACLU said the repeal puts "basketball over civil rights," implying that the move came in an effort to win back hosting rights for post-season NCAA basketball games.

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Pandemic forces startups to shift gears

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Spaces CEO Brad Herman had an early warning about COVID-19 because his startup supplies VR attractions to a number of theme parks in China. Realizing that the business he spent the last few years building was going to evaporate, Herman quickly found a new way to apply his team's know-how: helping companies host Zoom teleconferences in VR.

Why it matters: Many startups are rethinking the viability of their core businesses in the wake of the coronavirus. Spaces' move is one of many such pivots likely to crop up in the coming months.

International coronavirus treatment trial uses AI to speed results

Hydroxychloroquine is one of the drugs that will be included in the trial. Photo: John Philips/Getty Images

The first hospital network in the U.S. has joined an international clinical trial using artificial intelligence to help determine which treatments for patients with the novel coronavirus are most effective on an on-going basis.

Why it matters: In the midst of a pandemic, scientists face dueling needs: to find treatments quickly and to ensure they are safe and effective. By using this new type of adaptive platform, doctors hope to collect clinical data that will help more quickly determine what actually works.

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We can't just flip the switch on the coronavirus

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

It feels like some big, terrible switch got flipped when the coronavirus upended our lives — so it’s natural to want to simply flip it back. But that is not how the return to normalcy will go.

The big picture: Even as the number of illnesses and deaths in the U.S. start to fall, and we start to think about leaving the house again, the way forward will likely be slow and uneven. This may feel like it all happened suddenly, but it won't end that way.

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