Every Customer of Planet Fitness Needs to Read This Shocking Story

By Michael Brown Published on August 8, 2018

How do you describe something that is beyond ridiculous, beyond absurd? How do you paint a picture of something that is so upside down that it defies logic and reason? Let me give it my best shot. Not a word here is exaggerated or made-up.

In 1997, a woman whom we’ll call “Mrs. H.” was jogging when a man jumped out of the woods and tried to rape her. She was able to fight him off and ran for her life, bruised and cut on the outside and deeply traumatized on the inside.

Police were called; trained dogs searched the area; helicopters came in to aid the search. Who can imagine the lasting pain of an incident like this?

Mrs. H and Planet Fitness

Then, earlier this year, Mrs. H. went to her local Planet Fitness to work out, as she does most days of the week. But when she went into the locker room to change, there was a young man standing there, putting on make-up as he looked in the mirror.

Thinking he had walked into the wrong locker room by mistake, Mrs. H. asked him why he was there, pointing out that he was a man but was in the women’s changing area. He did not reply.

So Mrs. H. went to talk to the manager, who informed her that this man identified as a woman and by Planet Fitness policy, he was allowed to use the ladies’ locker room.

When she explained that she was not comfortable changing in the presence of a man (her locker was two feet from where he was standing), she was told she would have to wait.

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Mrs. H. waited for roughly an hour. (Think of waiting for one hour to use a locker room.) But when she went back, he was still inside.

She asked him, “How long will you be here?” but again, he didn’t reply.

She then explained that she was not comfortable changing in his presence, just as she wouldn’t be comfortable changing in the presence of her four sons. So, it was nothing personal against him. It was a simple male-female privacy issue. (And who uses a Planet Fitness locker room to put on make up for more than an hour?)

Just then, one of the female employees told her she had better leave, lest she get in trouble. When Mrs. H. asked why, the female employee said she had been “saying things.” Oh, what a terrible crime! (Somehow she had become the offender.)

Not wanting to create a scene, Mrs. H. left quickly, only to be followed by the man, who was on the phone. He had called 911, claiming that he had been sexually harassed. (I am not making this up.)

He was trying to give a description of Mrs. H. (his harasser!) to the 911 operator. But when she saw she was being followed, she began to run, and he began to run after her.

Twenty years earlier, she was running from an attempted rapist. Now she was running from a man who invaded the woman’s locker room and was accusing her of sexual harassment.

Yet it gets worse.

Membership Revoked for ‘Lunking’

She immediately received a letter in the mail from Planet Fitness telling her that her membership was revoked. Yes, her membership was revoked.

For what transgression? She was guilty of lunking! Yes, that was the term used by Planet Fitness.

And what, exactly does “lunking” include? Well, you can’t make grunting noises when you work out. You can’t drop weights. And you can’t judge. Mrs. H. was guilty of judging!

So severe was her crime that she was informed that she has been banned from 66 Planet Fitness branches. Banned!

Did I tell you this was beyond ridiculous?

But it gets more absurd still. According to an article on the LGTBQ Nation website, Mrs. H. is the culprit and the young man is the victim. As the headline proclaims, “A cis woman got banned from a gym for insulting a trans woman. She thinks she’s the victim.”

Oh, this poor deluded woman. How could she possibly think that she was the victim?

Consumer Fraud?

Thankfully, Mrs. H. had the presence of mind to call Liberty Counsel, even before she got the letter from Planet Fitness. And as Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel’s Founder and Chairman explained on my radio show, Planet Fitness could well be guilty of consumer fraud.

That’s because the written agreement signed by their patrons states that there are locker rooms for men and for women. It does not say a word about a man who identifies as a woman being able to use the women’s locker room. Yet, Planet Fitness has now stated that this is indeed their policy, contrary to their written, contractual agreement.

I urge every single patron of Planet Fitness, both female and male, to ask the manager at your gym if a man who identifies as a woman can use the women’s locker room. If the manager says yes, ask him or her to please show you this on the contract you signed.

And let’s be candid here. If a contract says that there are separate locker rooms for men and women, it’s understood that we’re talking biology. Who cares how the person identifies? Females don’t expect to change in the presence of males. Simple. (Remember also that many men who identify as women are still attracted to women.)

If the manager says that their new policy allows people to use the locker room that corresponds with their gender identity, point out to them that is not what their contract says. And then inform them that if they will allow males in the women’s locker room, you will have to cancel your membership. Then document what happened and send the information to Liberty Counsel. I also encourage you to share this article with all your friends as well.

Recent Case Law

The good news is that the Michigan Court of Appeals recently ruled against Planet Fitness in an almost identical case. As reported on the Club Industry website, “A Planet Fitness health club misled an ex-member by failing to fully explain its transgender-inclusive locker room policies when she signed a membership contract in 2015, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled on July 26.”

So, there is a little sanity left in this world after all. Let’s do our best to keep it that way.

And now that you’ve read this story, listen to Mrs. H. tell it her own words. You’ll also hear part of the 911 call from the young man, who could really use our prayers. As I said at the outset, not a word here is exaggerated or made-up. Who needs fiction with true stories like this?

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  • TheSaint4JC

    “So, there is a little sanity left in this world after all. Let’s do our best to keep it that way.”

    I’m thinking you might have meant to say “Let’s do our best NOT to keep it that way.”

  • Howard Rosenbaum

    Well , perhaps next to the “love of money “ being “the root of all evil” this political correctness thing must be running a close second in the race to self indulgence ….

  • NellieIrene

    What is equally ridiculous is that Planet Fitness felt the need to “ban” her. Did they really think she would continue to use Planet Fitness after this?

  • Patmos

    God will send STRONG delusion, Paul wrote to the church at Thessalonica.

  • Tim Pan

    1 Peter 2:11-12

    “Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the
    passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your
    conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against
    you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the
    day of visitation.”

  • Dena

    There were probably many other women who felt just as uncomfortable, but didn’t have the boldness to speak out.

  • Tonya Thomas Folks

    Thank you for doing such a thorough thoughtful piece on this case. I’ve seen multiple other outlets only tell part of the story, or slaughter the facts. I appreciate the integrity of the interview and the written piece!

  • Trilemma

    Looks like this person who identifies as a woman was there for the sole purpose of causing trouble. Who takes over an hour to put on makeup in a gym locker room? Who doesn’t respond when spoken to?

    • Andrew Mason

      And yet our increasingly confused and perverted society makes this possible. Had Planet Fitness offered locker rooms for men, women, and others this problem wouldn’t occur. Of course the LGBTfacists might scream at but there’s no winning with some folk.

      • Trilemma

        I’m all for LGBT rights, but this person hurt their cause more than they helped it. Many transgender women definitely should use the women’s locker room. Many transgender men should definitely use the men’s locker room. But if a person doesn’t look like the gender they identify with, then they should use the others’ locker room no matter how much LGBT activists complain.

        • Joy Elizabeth Teets

          Except we’re not “LGBT” though. Satan and the demons are deceiving people. These are people who are lost who need the Lord Jesus Christ.

    • handydan

      Who? A really sick “thing”. The best solution is to cancel memberships and go someplace else.

      • Trilemma

        This person is not a “thing.” They’re a fellow human being.

  • Please look at primary sources. The appeals court stated that the argument about misleading advertising should have been considered, not deemed as having been dropped.

    From the lower court published judgement, they thought the argument lacked merit too, so we’ll have to see if they have changed their minds when they re-hear it.

    Finally, plaintiff submits that the trial court erred in granting summary disposition to defendants’ on her claim brought under the Michigan Consumer Protection Act (MCPA). We disagree. The MCPA “prohibits the use of unfair, unconscionable, or deceptive methods, acts, or practices in the conduct of trade or commerce.” Zine v Chrysler Corp, 236 Mich App 261, 270271; 600 NW2d 384 (1999), citing MCL 445.903(1). “Trade or commerce” is defined as the conduct of a business providing goods, property, or service primarily for personal, family, or household purposes and includes the advertising, solicitation, offering for sale or rent, sale, lease, or distribution of a service or property, tangible or intangible, real, personal, or mixed, or any other article, or a business opportunity. [MCL 445.902(1)(g).]

    A person who suffers loss as a result of a violation of the MCPA “may bring an action to recover actual damages or $250.00, whichever is greater, together with reasonable attorneys’ fees.” MCL 445.911(2). “The MCPA is in many ways derivative of the common-law tort of fraud.” Brownlow v McCall Enterprises, Inc, 315 Mich App 103, 123; 888 NW2d 295 (2016). However, the MCPA eliminates an essential element of the common-law tort of fraud, i.e., proof of the intent of the merchant in most of the subsections. Id. “When the Legislature intended to require a plaintiff to prove the defendant’s intent, it specifically so provided in the statute.” Id. at 125. And, while a common law fraud claim based on misrepresentation requires that the plaintiff show reasonable reliance on misrepresentation, only two of the MCPA’s thirty-three “unfair, unconscionable, or deceptive methods, acts or practices” expressly require some form of reasonable reliance by the consumer. See MCL. § 445.903(1)(s) (“which fact could not be reasonably known by the consumer”) and (bb) (“a person reasonably believes”). Plaintiff alleged that defendants represented that there were separate locker rooms, shower and restroom facilities for men and women and in having an unwritten policy allowing men who self-identify as women to use the women’s facilities defendants violated MCL 445.903(1)(g), (n),2 (s), (t), (y), (bb), and (cc) of the MCPA. That statute provides, in relevant part

    (1) Unfair, unconscionable, or deceptive methods, acts, or practices in the conduct of trade or commerce are unlawful and are defined as follows: * * * (g) Advertising or representing goods or services with intent not to dispose of those goods or services as advertised or represented. * * * (n) Causing a probability of confusion or of misunderstanding as to the legal rights, obligations, or remedies of a party to a transaction. * * * (s) Failing to reveal a material fact, the omission of which tends to mislead or deceive the consumer, and which fact could not reasonably be known by the consumer (t) Entering into a consumer transaction in which the consumer waives or purports to waive a right, benefit, or immunity provided by law, unless the waiver is clearly stated and the consumer has specifically consented to it. * * * (y) Gross discrepancies between the oral representations of the seller and the written agreement covering the same transaction or failure of the other party to the transaction to provide the promised benefits. * * * (bb) Making a representation of fact or statement of fact material to the transaction such that a person reasonably believes the represented or suggested state of affairs to be other than it actually is. (cc) Failing to reveal facts that are material to the transaction in light of representations of fact made in a positive manner

    In her appeal brief, plaintiff does not cite to any particular subsection of the MCPA buts simply states that a policy allowing men full access to the women’s facilities is a material fact that should have been disclosed and that she correctly pled how defendants violated each subsection of the MCPA by either misrepresenting the facts or omitting them entirely. Plaintiff cites to no authority or statute, or even her complaint, in support of her position. It is not sufficient for a party “simply to announce a position or assert an error and then leave it up to this Court to discover and rationalize the basis for his claims, or unravel and elaborate for him his arguments, and then search for authority either to sustain or reject his position.” Wilson v Taylor, 457 Mich 232, 243; 577 NW2d 100 (1998), quoting Mitcham v Detroit, 355 Mich 182, 203; 94 NW2d 388 (1959). *We consider this claim abandoned on appeal and do not consider it*. We also do not consider her claim of error regarding exemplary damages, given our conclusion that all of her claims were properly dismissed.

    The error found by the higher court is confined to the section in *bold*. The rest of the ruling stands.

  • azsxdcf1

    God bless you, Mrs, H; and I am glad I discontinued my subscription at Planet Fitness… who needs ’em?

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