MORGONN MCMICHAEL: Activists arrested, charged after disrupting Riley Gaines TPUSA event in Buffalo
A protestor was arrested for attempting to hit a camera out of a woman’s hands outside Riley Gaines‘ speaking event with the TPUSA chapter at the University at Buffalo last night.
Three protestors began following and intimidating a camerawoman filming for the Leadership Institute. When she lowered her camera, one protestor hit it with a sign, attempting to knock it out of her hands. Police immediately intervened, and the suspect was captured on video running away from officers.
After competing with “transgender woman” Lia Thomas in the NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships in 2022, Riley Gaines spoke out against allowing transgender women to participate in female sports. The speech she has been delivering to college students around the country is titled, Protecting Women’s Sports, and emphasizes the significant biological advantages males have over females, even after receiving hormone treatments, that cannot be mitigated.
Last week, Gaines was assaulted by a male student following her speech at San Francisco State University, where protestors forced her into a room for three hours while they waited outside, debating the terms of her release. After this incident, Gaines knew what to expect when scheduling her appearance at the UB. According to reports from those present, police officers were present in greater numbers last night and “did a tremendous job.”
Some of the protest attendees are not affiliated with UB according to the school, making their decision to protest a student-led group’s selected speaker all the more incoherent.
Rayna Cooke, a senior biology major, told the UB Spectrum, “[Riley Gaines’ event is] clearly meant to make trans students feel unsafe and say, ‘You’re not welcome here,’ . . . trans students should feel safe and trans students are welcome at UB. UB should be doing more to show that that is the case, to make trans students feel protected.”
UB Spectrum reported.
In the days leading up to the event, students at UB placed posters around campus mocking Gaines, attempting to dissuade interested students from attending her speech. Gaines responded to seeing the images, stating, “I’ll never understand people putting this much effort into something/someone they don’t like. All for saying men and women are physiologically different.”
This column was originally published at TPUSALIVE.com.