ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory says that instead of protests and demonstrations over laws about LGBT rights, there needs to be more discussion.
Local media outlets report McCrory was at the Governor's Western Residence in Asheville on Saturday where he was met with demonstrators both supporting and opposed to a law limiting LGBT rights in North Carolina.
On Friday the Obama administration issued a directive saying that public schools must permit transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their chosen gender identity. That directive comes amid a court fight between the state and the federal government over North Carolina's House Bill 2.
McCrory, who was hosting an open house at the Western residence, told WLOS-TV that he wants demonstrators to be respectful and said he would be respectful of them.
"This a very complex issue. It's an emotional issue for people of all sides, and I think instead of having threats and boycotts and protests, we need to have more discussion," McCrory said.
There were also demonstrations Saturday by environmentalists concerned about another issue - what the protesters said is a corrupt relationship between McCrory and Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good.
Members of nine local groups protested against HB2, chanting and holding up signs reading such things as "love is unstoppable" and "love does not discriminate."
"It's not just about civil rights, but human rights," Sue McQueen told The Citizen-Times of Asheville. "I'm here to support common sense. I'm against anything that puts North Carolina back 150 years. We need to look forward."
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McCrory: Instead of protests, talk needed on LGBT matters