Tennessee transgender bathroom bill causing a stir in Nashville

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- It's the latest emotional issue being debated in the Tennessee General Assembly.

"This is despicable. We live in 2016. There efforts are trying to take us back to the 1960s," said Representative Johnnie Turner.

"I am going to force you to give up your views and morality and accept my views and morality, and that's where someone who's got to step in and say that's not the American way," responded Senator Brian Kelsey.

Some state lawmakers such as Turner and Kelsey are at odds over the transgender bathroom bill.

"But with the ACLU getting involved in filing lawsuits and pushing this liberal  progressive movement, then I do think we have to step in and say 'hey, someone got to protect our daughters who are wanting to use the restroom and have rights of privacy.'

The House bill would mandate students at Tennessee public schools and universities use the restroom or locker room that matches their sex at birth.

"I will never support any bill that discriminates against anybody because I know what it's like to be discriminated against. I remember having the separate bathrooms and every time I came out to the bathroom I was reminded that I was considered less than someone else," said Turner.

Governor Bill Haslam has expressed concern about the measure citing Tennessee may lose federal education money if it becomes law.

Similar bills in other states have some companies saying it amounts to discrimination and some have even threatened not to do business there.

"If those progressive agendas  want to be pursued in other states, that's fine, but in Tennessee we have traditional conservative values, and think it's perfectly fine if we want to protect those values on the level of children in school bathrooms."

"It's just discrimination disguised as trying to find a resolution to make it acceptable. It's discrimination no matter how you look at it."

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