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Laverne Cox Speaks Out After Transphobic Attack: “It’s Not Safe if You’re a Trans Person”


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Laverne Cox is speaking out after experiencing a transphobic attack over the weekend.

In an IGTV video posted Saturday, Cox revealed that she was still “in shock” and feeling “super triggered” after walking with a friend at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. She said they were walking when a man “aggressively” asked them for the time. “Then the guy who asked for the time says to my friend: ‘Guy or girl?’” Cox said. “My friend says, ‘Fuck off.’”

Cox said though she was walking ahead, she quickly realized the man attacked her friend and they began fighting. “The guy is like hitting my friend, and then my friend is going toward him and I’m like ‘Holy shit,” Cox said. “I pull out my phone and I call to dial 911, and all of a sudden it’s over and the guy is gone.”

After reflecting on the incident, Cox said she believes the man wanted Cox to answer his question instead of her friend. “The guy really wanted me to answer so that he could spook whether I’m trans or not,” Cox said. “I don’t know why, I don’t know why it matters. At the end of the day, it’s like who cares? I’m in a hoodie and yoga pants, I’m completely covered up, I’ve got my mask on. Who cares if I’m trans? How does this affect your life?”

Cox explained that while a frightening moment, she’s “had a long history of street harassment in New York.” “This isn’t shocking to me. Obviously, this is my life. I’ve dealt with this a lot, but it never fails to be shocking,” Cox said, adding that “none of this is new” because she’s “been harassed and bullied my whole life.”

Of the attack, Cox said she was “lucky and grateful” her friend was there and the attack was a reminder that “it’s not safe in the world.” “It’s not safe if you’re a trans person. Obviously, I know this well. It’s just really sad.” Cox also explained that she’s usually “hyper-aware” whenever she leaves the house given her past experiences. Thankful she and her friend are okay, Cox admitted the attack left her feeling so triggered that she had to keep reminding herself, “It’s 2020. I’m not 11-years-old… I’m safe. I’m in my home now. Everything’s okay now. I’m safe.”

“It doesn’t matter who you are. You can be Laverne Cox, you know, or whatever that means. If you’re trans, you’re going to experience stuff like this,” she said.

Cox then expressed her hope that everyone is “aware of your surroundings” and know that “it’s not your fault” should an attack like the one she experienced happen to them. “It’s not your fault that there are people not cool with you existing in the world,” she said. “We have a right to walk in the park.”

Watch Cox’s full video below.

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