Former NCAA All-American swimmer Riley Gaines last week posted footage from her San Francisco State University event after she claimed claimed to have been chased out and eventually physically harmed by a man and others protesting her presence on campus.
“The prisoners are running the asylum at SFSU,” Gaines posted to Twitter. “I was ambushed and physically hit twice by a man. This is proof that women need sex-protected spaces.”
She added that this assault “Still only further assures me I’m doing something right. When they want you silent, speak louder.”
The prisoners are running the asylum at SFSU…I was ambushed and physically hit twice by a man. This is proof that women need sex-protected spaces.
Still only further assures me I'm doing something right. When they want you silent, speak louder. 🗣️ pic.twitter.com/uJW3x9RERf
— Riley Gaines (@Riley_Gaines_) April 7, 2023
Gaines’ event, which was sponsored by the conservative youth organization Turning Point USA, was intended to discuss the detrimental impact the inclusion of biological men are having on women’s sports.
In the footage, Gaines can be seen fleeing the scene as pro-transgender protestors flood the inside and outside of the room while screaming and shaking signs which say “trans rights are human rights.” As Gaines was leaving the verbal onslaught in fear for her safety, she then claims she was physically assaulted by a male protestor as she attempted to leave.
Gaines was later escorted by police to another room, where her representative states she was held for three hours until the protests ended, and then later escorted off the SFSU campus.
“Instead of a thoughtful discussion at SFSU, Riley was violently accosted, shouted at, physically assaulted, and barricaded in a room by protestors,” her agent said in a statement to the press. “It is stunning that in America in 2023, it is acceptable for biological male students to violently assault a woman for standing up for women’s rights.”
Gaines’ representative later called for a police investigation into the assault and “for any student who was violent to be expelled from the university.”
California congressman and current Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy went to Twitter after Gaines’ video went viral, posting “This is an appalling attack on free speech on a college campus. House Republicans stand with Riley Gaines and her brave and tireless efforts to protect women’s sports.”
The Queer and Trans Resource Center at SFSU claimed that it was an off-campus organization and not a SFSU student responsible for organizing the protest against Gaines. The organization also added that they “support students’ freedom of speech and freedom of expression that does not include hate speech prohibited by Title IX and does not incite violence.”
The campus police stated after the incident that “We are conducting an ongoing investigation into the situation. There were no arrests related to the event. The disruption occurred after the conclusion of the event which made it necessary for UPD officers to move the event speaker from the room to a different, safe location.”
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