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TransAmerica: Video of Vicious Attack Against Trans Women While Onlookers Cheer

This weekend, we took a wide-angle look at the larger issues about transgender rights and their battle both for societal acceptance and (the very human) battle for self-acceptance. While these issues are worth examining, when discussed in the abstract it can be easy to forget how trans individuals live with the constant threat of violence.

Take a recent viral video that features a fight between two men and two trans women on the MARTA subway system in Atlanta. The graphic video – an edited version appears below – depicts Janell Crosby and Tyra Woods exchanging barbs with two men, allegedly Frederick L. Missick and Luther L. Thomas who’ve since been arrested.

In the video, it appears as if it is the man alleged to be Missick who attacks Crosby. Almost immediately, Woods leaps to her friend’s defense. As the fight continues, Woods is stripped completely naked, yet she continues to fight. Onlookers shout and cheer like middle-school children watching their first fistfight.

What is perhaps most shocking about this video is that no one steps in to break up the fight. Eventually the fight peters out on its own, with the two assailants continuing to shout homophobic threats to the other two.

While MARTA has since condemned the attack, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “the investigation was hampered by a lack of witnesses willing to come forward.” Crosby, however, says that when she first tried to report the incident to MARTA and was ignored. According to RawStory.com, both Crosby and Woods have since moved away from the city because they are now afraid to live there.

According to reports, the altercation between these two pairs of people began when the men were harassing and photographing the women on the platform. The “crime” Woods and Crosby committed was in trying to stand up for themselves and assert their right to live how they want.

Photo via screengrab.

About the author

Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. Along with news and current events, he writes about parenting, art, and personal stories. His serial fiction story "The Prophet Hustle" is available at JukePop.com and a forthcoming independent ebook about the cam-modeling industry "Dirty Little Windows" will be available later this summer.