July 25, 2018
If you think you've had a rough month, try being in the PR department for Planet Fitness! First, the gym was slammed for revoking the membership of a woman who complained about a biological man sharing her locker room. Then, in an ironic twist, the same argument they used to defend that outrage came back to haunt them when a 34-year-old man decided to visit a Massachusetts chain and workout in the nude!
I thought it was a "judgment-free zone," 34-year-old Eric Stagno told police. That is, after all, what Planet Fitness told the woman in Florida (and another in Michigan) about sharing private spaces with the opposite sex. If it's okay to let men undress in front of women in their locker rooms, why not out in the open?
"The story we got from witnesses," police captain Brett Morgan said, "was that the guy walked in, stripped down right there in front, left the clothes and belongings at the front desk, walked back and forth across the gym a couple of times and then settled in over at the yoga mats." Other exercisers said they felt "sick," "unsafe," and "disgusted" -- the same words that could have been used by women who were shocked to find out that Planet Fitness's unposted policy was to let men expose themselves in the women's showers or locker rooms any time they wanted!
Unlike Jordan Rice, who was supposedly justified in horrifying "Mrs. H" in Florida, Eric Stagno was charged with "indecent exposure, lewdness and disorderly conduct." Apparently, Planet Fitness isn't always judgment-free -- just when it comes to political correctness. And that's where their logic breaks down. Extremists, like the ones at Planet Fitness, who think it's okay to put women in dangerous situations because "tolerance," don't seem to understand that once you abandon millennia of moral values, it's impossible to draw a line. How can you say to one person that public indecency is wrong if you allow it behind locker room doors?
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.