Transgender People and Violence

A common belief about violence against transgender individuals is often the image of a cisgender man (i.e., a man who identifies with his assigned male birth sex) who sexually or physically harms or kills a transgender woman. In most images or stories, this man is a stranger who had a “trans-panic”—that is, the assailant was surprised or “deceived” when the victim’s transgender identity or history was disclosed or revealed.

In addition to this instance, transgender and gender nonconforming people experience violence in all the ways and for all of the reasons cisgender people do. They are, for example, victimized in a street crime, they get involved in a barroom fight, or they argue with a family member, who picks up a knife. Transgender people (like cisgender ...

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