On November 30, Laverne Cox went on Instagram live to confirm that she is safe after being attacked in Los Angeles.
According to the actress, on November 28, she and her male friend, Joel, were approached by a man in the park who she says “aggressively asked for the time.” Cox’s friend looked at his watch and told the man what time it was, when suddenly the man asked Joel if Cox was a “guy or girl” and began attacking him. Cox says she reached for her phone to call 9-1-1, but the man had run away before she could complete the call. During her live, she called the occurrence “triggering,” and says that although she was “in shock,” she and her friend are okay.
Cox’s friend says he’s never been attacked simply for being with a transgender person, while Laverne took time to talk about her “long history” of being attacked on the streets of New York because of her gender. She also noted that because of her previous encounters with harassment, the attack was “extremely triggering” for her. “This has happened to me before,” she said during the video. “I’ve been trans my whole life. I’ve been harassed and bullied my whole life. None of this is new, but it’s still just kind of like, ‘Who cares?’.
Cox also used this moment to talk about how transphobia affects not only her, but the community at large when completing simple tasks like walking in the park. She then shared that it’s still shocking when she experiences transphobia, even though it’s happened all her life, but “living in fear is not a good thing.”
“If you’re Laverne Cox, whatever that means, things like this can and do happen to trans people everyday,” she said towards the end. “When these things happen, it’s not your fault that people are not okay with you existing in the world.”
Watch Cox’s full live here.