Missouri Family E-News

March 24, 2015

Planet Fitness Cans Member Over Demand for Privacy

The American Family Association is calling out a national fitness chain after their abusive treatment of a woman seeking to protect her personal privacy.

Managers of the Planet Fitness facility in Midland, Michigan, revoked the membership of Yvette Cormier after she expressed concerns about the presence of a man in the women's locker room.

Cormier says she "freaked out" when she came face to face with the man in the women's dressing area.  "I was stunned and shocked.  It was very scary."

When Cormier brought the matter to the attention of employees at Planet Fitness, she was told that "[we] have to embrace whatever sex someone thinks they are, and they are allowed to use whatever restroom they want to use."

Cormier proceeded to alert other women at the facility to the fact that they could not expect personal privacy in the women's locker room.   Planet Fitness managers then terminated Cormier's membership, saying her behavior was "disruptive and inappropriate."

While the ultraliberal media have reported that the man in question is a "transgendered" individual, Cormier says that was not her experience.

"He totally looked like a man.  He was not dressed like a woman at all," Cormier stated.  "If you have male parts, you don't need to be in the women's restroom.  I don't care what you are."

Planet Fitness has engaged in a high-profile, aggressive corporate campaign to locate new facilities in metro areas around the country.  They have advertised heavily, emphasizing that their facilities are a "judgment-free zone."  It is now becoming clear that their marketers are not referring to people's weight.

The American Family Association (AFA) is challenging members of Planet Fitness to cancel their memberships to show solidarity with Cormier and to protect the safety and privacy of their family members.

"It is irresponsible of this corporation to knowingly expose young girls to men who identify as women, or young boys to women who identify as men," says Tim Wildmon, President of AFA.

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, says bizarre incidents like this one are only the beginning of similar episodes resulting from new laws prohibiting "gender identity" discrimination.

"This is the kind of topsy-turvy scenario that will be playing out in restroom and locker rooms across the country if more cities don't turn back this push to elevate 'sexual orientation' and 'gender identity' above personal privacy and public safety."

"Tolerance sounds like a great idea until your little girl is in the restroom with a grown man," Perkins says.  "By introducing gender politics into an environment like a gym, Planet Fitness is creating a culture ripe for abuse."

A public relations spokeswoman for Planet Fitness issued the following comical and nonsensical statement:  "Planet Fitness is committed to creating a non-intimidating, welcoming environment for our members."  That is, unless you are a woman who prefers not to disrobe or shower in front of gazing male strangers.

It would seem that Planet Fitness's "judgment-free zone" isn't working out so well for other people in addition to Yvette Cormier.  Last July,  a man was charged with sexually assaulting a 14 year-old girl inside one of its facilities.

In yet another case, an employee of Planet Fitness was arrested for placing hidden cameras inside a women's tanning room.  Another Planet Fitness employee has sued the company for sexual assault and sexual harassment.


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Springfield Voters to Consider Deceptive "Gay Rights" Law  

The Christian community in the city of Springfield, Missouri, is gearing up for the final days of a campaign to repeal a new city ordinance granting special rights to homosexuals and "transgender" individuals.  

Voters in Springfield will be going to the polls on Tuesday, April 7th, for their scheduled municipal elections.  Among the issues on the ballot is Question 1, which would invalidate a "gay rights" ordinance adopted by the Springfield City Council in October of last year.

Should the ordinance stand, nearly all public restrooms in the city of Springfield will become unisex facilities, and Christian business owners will be the target of government harassment and prosecution.  Christian organizations will also lose the freedom to hire individuals who share their religious convictions.

The issue is on the ballot because Springfield residents gathered sufficient signatures to force a public referendum on the subject.  It took the Christian community less than a month to collect twice the signatures required to submit the "gay rights" ordinance to a public vote.

A "YES" vote will repeal the anti-Christian ordinance.  A "NO" vote will retain the special rights granted to homosexuals and transgender individuals in employment, housing, and public accommodations.  The committee working to overturn this horrendous ordinance is Yes on Question 1

The Springfield ordinance is similar to a wave of new laws across the country that amend employment discrimination and public accommodations statutes to include the nebulous terms "sexual orientation" and "gender identity."  By contrast, longstanding anti-discrimination statutes have prohibited bias in hiring and the provision of services based on immutable characteristics like race, age, gender, and disability.

Under the provisions of the new "gay rights" laws pushed by homosexual activists, personal behavior is now for the first time the basis for protected classes--in this case the sexual behavior and sexual affections of individuals, whether actual or "perceived."  The Springfield ordinance, like most of these laws, fails to exclude pedophiles from the politically contrived definition of "sexual orientation."

The most sweeping consequence of these "gay rights" ordinances is their impact on restroom facilities, whether in a public building or private business.  Any man can enter a women's restroom simply by claiming that his "gender identity" is that of a woman.  This extends to locker rooms, changing rooms, and shower facilities as well. 

Opponents of the Springfield ordinance have focused on this issue, as they should, calling on voters to "keep children safe in Springfield bathrooms."  The ordinance they are seeking to repeal clearly enables sexual predators to lurk, leer, and intimidate young women and little girls in a place where they should be entitled to absolute privacy.

The most damaging result of these ordinances is their brutal impact on the religious freedom of Christian business owners.  The language of the Springfield ordinance prohibits "refusing, withholding, or denying" commercial services or public accommodations based on "sexual orientation" or "gender identity."
Similar laws in other cities and states have been used to prosecute Bible-believing Christians for standing by their religious convictions.  Florists, bakers, and photographers have been found guilty of "sexual orientation" discrimination for declining to provide floral arrangements, decorate cakes, or take pictures for homosexual union ceremonies.  Many faithful Christians have been the victims of exceedingly punitive fines, civil penalties, or legal awards.

The "gay rights" cheerleaders in the ultraliberal media have repeatedly dishonestly portrayed these incidents as refusals to provide service to homosexuals.  The fact is these individuals have not refused to serve homosexual customers.  In fact, Baronelle Stutzman,  the florist being prosecuted in Washington state, both served and employed homosexuals for years. 

What these individuals have done is refuse to participate in ceremonies that solemnize sexual immorality.  They have demonstrated commendable courage in declining to be engaged in activities that God has described as an abomination.  They have done what any true follower of Christ should do--resist any complicity in actions that are in open defiance against God and His Word.

The most insidious long-term impact of the Springfield ordinance may well be its hostile intrusion on the religious liberty of Christian institutions and organizations.  The ordinance forbids any employer from firing or failing to hire any individual based on their "sexual orientation" or "gender identity."  The religious exemption included in the ordinance is so narrow that it only applies to established churches and seminaries.

That means that religious school and religious non-profits can and will be sued for declining to hire individuals who are professed homosexuals.  Private schools and Christian ministries will face expensive lawsuits because they refrain from hiring individuals who not only disagree with their beliefs and mission statements, but who are in vocal opposition to them.

We have seen the inevitable result of this in other states and communities.  Teachers in religious schools have "married" their same-sex "partners," and then sued the schools when they were dismissed for violating their employment contracts.  Those employment agreements required that those teaching the principles of a religious faith adhere to that faith in their personal lives and public witness.

The Springfield ordinance even eliminated a section that allowed religious denominations to hire individuals who are members of their faith group.  This has obvious implications for many religious institutions in town, not the least of which is the international headquarters of the Assemblies of God.

If you live in the Springfield area, we urge you to do everything you can in the days to come to support a "YES" vote on Question 1 on April 7th.  Please help post signs on your property, whether it be a private residence or business.  Please help distribute campaign literature to your friends, co-workers, and neighbors.  You can make connections with the campaign committee working to repeal this anti-Christian ordinance by using this link:

If you are a pastor or church leader in Springfield, we urge you to encourage your congregation to vote YES on Question 1.  You can do so without any threat to your non-profit status since this is a non-partisan issue.  You can distribute literature in support of Question 1 on your church premises and post signs on your church property without concern about legal retribution.

If you do not live in the city of Springfield, we ask that you contact any family and friends you know who do live there.  Please alert them to the seriousness of this issue, and urge them to get out and vote on April 7th. 

Please be praying that the citizens of Springfield see through the false propaganda being disseminated by supporters of the ordinance and by their biased allies and advocates in the media.  Protect women and children, and defend religious freedom.  Vote Yes on Question 1.

Joe's Signature