Tennessee Senate Pulls Controversial Anti-Trans Bill

By Michelle Garcia

Originally published on Advocate.com January 13 2012 7:47 PM ET

A Tennessee state senator withdrew a controversial bill that would bar transgender people from using public restrooms and dressing rooms that match their gender identity.

The house version of the bill was introduced by state Rep. Richard Floyd, who said he would "stomp a mudhole" into a transgender woman who tried to use the same department store dressing room as his wife or daughters. Floyd said he was introducing the bill after a woman was fired from a San Antonio, Texas Macy's department store, because she did not allow a transgender teenager to try clothes in the women's dressing room.

"It could happen here," Floyd said when he introduced the bill on the House floor, according to the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He added, "We cannot continue to let these people dominate how society acts and reacts. Now if somebody thinks he’s a woman and he’s a man and wants to try on women’s clothes, let them him take them into the men’s bathroom or dressing room."

Sen. Bo Watson, who introduced the Senate version of the bill, withdrew it promptly, and said there were more pressing issues for the Tennessee House to consider. According to the report, Watson said he only sponsored the bill as a courtesy to his fellow Hamilton County legislative delegates.