January 18, 2021 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

Laverne Cox Gives Details On Transphobic Attack

Trans Actress Laverne Cox star of the Netflix series “Orange Is The New Black” took to social media to detail a transphobic assault against herself and a friend leaving the star “in shock and triggered.”

The outspoken trans activist gave a detailed description of the attack saying she was approached by a man while out on a socially distanced walk with a friend in Los Angeles. After he “very aggressively” asked for the time, the man demanded to know whether Cox was a “’guy or girl.’”

When Cox’s friend told the stranger to “fuck off,” the encounter quickly turned violent. According to Cox, her friend was struck several times.

In a state of shock Cox pulled out her cell phone and dialed 911 but by the time she did the attacker had fled. 

Cox, who is safe and unharmed, said her friend who prefers to remain anonymous was “fine.” Still, the random attack left the actress feeling “triggered” reminding her of the staggeringly high rates of hate-motivated violence transgender people face every day.

The actress took the opportunity to remind trans people that these attacks are never their fault: “We were walking in the park. We weren’t doing anything. I think it’s important for me to remind you, and to remind myself, that when these things happen, it isn’t your fault. That there are people who are not cool with you existing in the world. … If something like this happens to you, be as safe as you can.” 

The Human Rights Campaign has reported at least 39 trans or gender non-conforming Americans were violently killed in 2020 alone. That number marks a grim single-year high since HRC began tracking trans homicides in 2013. Black trans women are also disproportionately impacted by this epidemic of violence.

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