On April 7, 2023, former NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines was reportedly physically and verbally attacked by a protester while attending a Turning Point USA and Leadership Institute event at San Francisco State University (SFSU). Gaines had just given a speech on saving women’s sports when the incident occurred.
ALLEGED ATTACK BY PROTESTERS IN WOMEN’S CLOTHING
According to her husband, Louis Barker, Gaines was hit multiple times by a protester dressed in women’s clothing. The alleged attacker physically and verbally assaulted Gaines after she gave her speech. The attack reportedly lasted for a few minutes before police arrived. Gaines was then barricaded in a room on the third floor of a university building for nearly three hours. She shared footage of the police escorting her to safety.
INDEPENDENT WOMEN’S FORUM CONDEMNS THE ATTACK
The Independent Women’s Forum released a statement condemning the attack on Gaines. The organization believes that it is unacceptable for anyone to be physically assaulted for exercising their First Amendment rights. They called on all Americans, regardless of political views, to condemn this senseless and cowardly act of violence.
GAINES’ STANCE ON TRANSGENDER ATHLETES
It is important to note that the incident involving Gaines is separate from the controversy surrounding University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas, a transgender woman who competed and won in women’s swimming events. While Gaines has expressed discomfort with competing against transgender athletes in the past, it is not clear if this was a topic of discussion during her speech at SFSU or if it was related to the attack.
The alleged physical and verbal attack on former NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines at San Francisco State University (SFSU) is a concerning event that has garnered attention from the Independent Women’s Forum. It is important to remember that everyone has the right to exercise their First Amendment rights and speak freely without fear of physical harm. The incident involving Gaines serves as a reminder that there is still much work to be done in terms of promoting a safe and inclusive environment for all individuals.