A man has been arrested after assaulting a transgender woman in Center City Philadelphia.
Seattle’s Ryannah Quigley was in Philadelphia for the Creating Change conference, an annual gathering that brings LGBTQ activists together. When walking, her and her friends encountered a man who immediately began to question her gender identity.
“I said, ‘Is there a reason why you’re staring at me up and down?’ And he stopped and turned and looked and he said, ‘Whatever bro.’ So that’s when I said, ‘Please don’t call me bro,'” Quigley told NBC 10.
The man then began to shout aggressively at Quigley, calling her a “faggot” and other homophobic and transphobic slurs. Quigley quickly got her phone out and began recording the man on Facebook Live. This angered him, and he began to punch and hit Quigley with a bag of groceries.
“Often times we are not believed,” Quigley said. “We are often looked at as the problem. Because as trans women people assume that, ‘Oh, you must have been hitting on him.'”
Quigley reported the incident to the Philadelphia Police, who later saw the man in the same clothes he wore in the video at the Frankford Bus Terminal. Homeless, the man’s name is Daejon Workman. He has been charged with simple assault recklessly endangering another person.
While this may seem as a victory, Quigley posted on Facebook that she is uneasy about the arrest and struggling with these consequences for the man.
What really needs to happen before we put this man in prison, we need to educate him about transgender and homosexual people. Maybe this education will create some empathy, preventing these hateful attitudes to exist with these violent consequences.
Quigley also offers a message of hope. In an interview with NBC 10 she said, “”Transgender individuals, they are people. They are living and they will continue to be here.”