On Monday, the federal government announced it's suing the state of North Carolina over HB2, the controversial legislation frequently referred to as the "bathroom bill."
This move comes after North Carolina filed a lawsuit against the federal government after it urged the state to abandon HB2 or face the possibility of being denied millions in federal funding.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch delivered an impassioned and eloquent speech on these developments Monday afternoon, referring to HB2 as "state-sponsored discrimination against transgender individuals."
Lynch, who is a North Carolina-native, even compared the "bathroom bill" to the segregation laws of the Jim Crow era, one of the most shameful chapters in US history.
This is not the first time that we have seen discriminatory responses to historic moments of progress for our nation. We saw it in the Jim Crow laws that followed the Emancipation Proclamation. We saw it in fierce and widespread resistance to Brown v. Board of Education. And we saw it in the proliferation of state bans on same-sex unions intended to stifle any hope that gay and lesbian Americans might one day be afforded the right to marry. That right, of course, is now recognized as a guarantee embedded in our Constitution, and in the wake of that historic triumph, we have seen bill after bill in state after state taking aim at the LGBT community... Instead of turning away from our neighbors, our friends, our colleagues, let us instead learn from our history and avoid repeating the mistakes of our past. Let us reflect on the obvious but often neglected lesson that state-sanctioned discrimination never looks good in hindsight. It was not so very long ago that states, including North Carolina, had signs above restrooms, water fountains and on public accommodations keeping people out based upon a distinction without a difference. We have moved beyond those dark days, but not without pain and suffering and an ongoing fight to keep moving forward. Let us write a different story this time. Let us not act out of fear and misunderstanding, but out of the values of inclusion, diversity and regard for all that make our country great.
The attorney general sent a powerful message of solidarity to the transgender community.
Her strongly worded remarks generated a great deal of discussion, and in many cases applause, on Twitter.
Indeed, this speech will definitely stand as a defining moment in Lynch's tenure as attorney general.