Protesters clash in LA over transgender woman disrobing in spa
Tensions rose Saturday between protesters and counterprotesters in Los Angeles over a spa incident involving a transgender woman.
Last week, a cisgender woman complained to staff at Wi Spa in Koreatown after a transgender woman disrobed in a designated women’s section of the spa.
“It’s OK for a man to go into the women’s section, show his penis around the other women, young little girls, underage? Your spa, Wi Spa, condones that?” a female patron asked staff in a video that went viral on Twitter. “He is not a female.”
A staff member responded that the facility could not discriminate against the woman based on her gender identity, sparking further outrage among some customers. Another female patron was shown in the video demanding her money back and vowing to not return to the spa.
Demonstrators flocked to Wi Spa — some to protest against the spa and others to defend the transgender woman’s rights.
Exchanges broke out between the two groups, with some quarrels escalating to punches, NBC News reported.
Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Nicholas Prange told the outlet that one person was transported to a medical facility after sustaining non-life-threatening injuries.
According to the Los Angeles Times, police in riot gear were eventually sent to break up the altercation.
Wi Spa defended its stance on the issue in a statement to Los Angeles Magazine, saying, “Like many other metropolitan areas, Los Angeles contains a transgender population, some of whom enjoy visiting a spa.”
“Wi Spa strives to meet the needs of all its customers,” it continued.