There is a debate raging in America over whether it is discriminatory to require students to use the restroom or locker room of their birth gender. Award-winning journalist David Kupelian shakes his head at how far the country has descended in such a short period of time.

“Ten years ago, transgender bathroom bills were considered a joke when they were introduced in places like uber-progressive Montgomery County, Maryland,” said Kupelian, WND’s vice president and managing editor and author of “The Snapping of the American Mind.” “Today, if you don’t get with the program, you’re a bigot and a hater. And if you’re a governor or corporate CEO, your state or company will be threatened and boycotted until you submit.”

Executives at 60 major corporations recently signed a letter encouraging Tennessee legislators to reject a bill that would require students at public schools and colleges to use restrooms and locker rooms corresponding to the gender they were born with, not any subsequent “gender identity.”

The executives framed the issue as one of “discrimination” against transgender individuals, stating their companies “pride ourselves on being inclusive and welcoming to all.”

Dr. Paul Kengor, a college professor and author of “Takedown: From Communists to Progressives, How the Left Has Sabotaged Family and Marriage,” said it’s sad to see corporations jump on the LGBT bandwagon.

“We always knew that the left controlled academia, media and Hollywood, but we thought that corporations were immune from the secular-progressive takedown of the country and culture,” Kengor told WND. “Not anymore. They have now joined the vanguard in the left’s fundamental transformation of the country, the culture, and human nature.”

It may appear as though all 60 executives naturally support LGBT rights, but that is not necessarily the case, according to Dr. Michael Brown.

“Since the late 1980s, a major gay strategy has been ‘the buck stops with us,’ meaning, ‘we will take our business from companies that don’t support us and bring our business to companies that do,'” said Brown, a talk radio host and author of “Outlasting the Gay Revolution.” “The strategy became fine-tuned by the Human Rights Campaign, the world’s largest gay activist organization, which publishes its Corporate Equality Index every year, rating companies on where they stand on gay activist issues. To get a good grade is considered good business today; bad grades are to be avoided.

“And so the moment that there’s a controversy over a bill like North Carolina’s HB2 or Tennessee’s HB 2414/SB 2387, the bathroom safety bills, the HRC is able to get talking points to all the major companies and to organize them in a unified effort against the bill, giving the feeling that all the companies acted independently, which is not true.”

Kengor agreed many corporate executives are “easily bullied and coerced and afraid of the self-anointed forces of ‘tolerance’ and ‘diversity’ who boycott, protest, picket, attack, harass, debase, demonize, dehumanize, and destroy those who disagree with them.”

But the professor suggested another reason why corporations may be supporting transgender rights.

“The heads and boards and management of these corporations tend to be the very same products of the secular/radical-left universities that have mis-educated the movers and molders in academia, media and Hollywood,” Kengor said. “They are the indoctrinated godchildren of a deeper radical secularism, dictatorship of relativism, and even occasional variants of cultural Marxism that they don’t even discern let alone fully understand.”

Despite fierce opposition, North Carolina was able to pass its own transgender bathroom bill into law last month. The Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act bars individuals from using public restrooms that do not match their sex on a driver’s license, and it prohibits local governments from passing any laws to the contrary.

The Tennessee bill, which only applies to restrooms and locker rooms in schools and colleges, is narrower in scope than the North Carolina law yet will not become law anytime soon. Rep. Susan Lynn, R-Mount Juliet, announced Monday she plans on effectively killing her own bill by delaying action on it until next year so she and her fellow legislators can study the issue further.

The difficulty of passing a measure like this signifies the advance of transgender rights as a hot-button public policy issue, according to Brown.

“The fact that the ‘T’ word has become central is very telling, meaning that more and more Americans are drinking the Kool-Aid and believing that perception is reality,” said Brown, who is also a WND columnist. “It’s a very precarious time in our history.”

Kupelian expanded on the idea that perception is becoming reality.

“Up until a just a few years ago, virtually every psychiatrist, psychologist and doctor in the world understood that a man thinking he’s really a woman, or a woman thinking she’s really a man, is in the grip of a pathological delusion, similar to a very skinny anorexic woman being absolutely convinced she is fat,” Kupelian explained. “Today, we are not only glorifying this particular mental health disorder and making it normal – we are compelling, with the force of law, everyone else in the country to accept delusion as normality.”

As evidence of this compulsion, Tennessee’s attorney general claimed the transgender bathroom bill, if enacted, would jeopardize at least $1.1 billion in federal funds for K-12 schools and higher education. This is because the Obama administration interprets the federal Title IX provision as including transgender students in its protections based on sex. Title IX mandates no person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, “be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

Of course, proponents of the bill are less concerned about the “equal rights” of transgender people than the rights to safety and privacy of young women and girls. But young women and girls are not the only ones harmed by a culture that allows biological men into women’s restrooms, according to Kupelian.

“It may appear that the only ‘victims’ in this are all the teenaged schoolgirls forced to endure men invading their bathroom or locker room privacy,” Kupelian said. “But the victim list goes far beyond this. In truth, by rolling over for the opposition to these ‘transgender bathroom laws’ and the perverse, bizarre worldview underlying it, we are in the process of corrupting and morally confusing an entire generation of Americans into believing delusion is truth and that commonsense decency and discernment amount to ‘discrimination’ and ‘hate.'”

Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.