It is supposed to be packing day. The fridge is cleaned out and I am eating at fast food joints to allay my need for protein. With the fantasy that I will just have a salad, I arrived at the local Mc Donalds on my scooter and went to use the restroom.
As I entered the men’s room I was confronted with an ignorant brute that had another individual against a wall, confused I slowly backed out. As the yelling became louder I heard many homophobic and trans phobic slurs.
As I reentered the restroom, I used my deepest voice and called on the aggressor to confront me if he had a problem. He swung, I ducked, his fist hit a solid wall. I could hear bones break.
Whimpering that he would “get me” he ran from the restroom. As I turned around to check on the person who was assaulted, I noticed the male clothing, coupled with makeup, and distinctly feminine jewelry. She briefly explained that she was in her “day work clothes” and has had many bad experiences with attempting to use the women’s room in the past.
I am stunned at the level of transphobia. First to all, to the women that caused this individual use the men’s room, shame on you for actions that lead to this assault. Second, to the jerk that assaulted her, you are a criminal, while the victim did not want to call the police, I surly would testify against you. Finally, to all those for whom transphobia is a remote issue that others deal with, you are wrong, today I had to deal with it face on and it was ugly.
Today I had to make a decision as to weather to get involved. The tug to “mind my business” was strong. In the end, however, I would rather take a beating for my decision to intervene than allow someone to take a beating for who they are. I am glad it turned out as it did, yet it has caused me to think deeply about our cultures influences that call on us to remain silent and un involved in the face of hate, I felt the tug to turn away, and I am not proud of that instinct.