This is Pearl Love, a trans woman who is working as an intern at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center in New York.
In a Facebook post Monday, Love said she recorded a woman in a crowded New York subway train shouting transphobic and racial slurs at her. The woman then swung at her — it's unclear if she hit her — while other passengers looked on. The video has been viewed more than 40,000 times on Facebook.
Love told BuzzFeed News Tuesday that the incident happened on April 28.
She recounted the incident in her Facebook post:
Between 4:30-4:45 pm. I was on 6 train from Bronx to the LGBT center to work , when I change 6 train to 4 express train in 125 st station an unknown woman sitting across me starter to verbally abuse me. Make lot of shit comments about how much she hate Trans people and want me to suck her dick. She also made racist comments. I ignored her and kept reading my book. When the train got to 86 st she start getting so loud and crazy yelling at me so I started to record her on my phone can- she start getting even louder and start assault me and hit me. As you can see it's definitely a hate crime. She attacked me inside the train . When I retreated she threw all my stuff on the floor and chased me around the train and say she is going to find a stick to hit me. It was a crowded train and everyone heard it but no one helped me. Guys acting like nothing happened. For 5 min. Then when the train stop on 42 st. She got out of train but keep yelling at me, I recorded 4 videos around 3.5 min. Thanks to an older guy who helped me pick my stuff up and put it back my bag, and said sorry to me👍. So now you can understand what's happening in my everyday life. That happens all the time. But it's my first time recording it. 😅
Love told BuzzFeed News that such incidents "happen to me every day" — but this time she recorded the woman because "she was talking for too long."
"This time is very different," Love said. "She's talking too long, for five minutes. When she starts talking shit, I pretend I didn't hear it but she kept getting louder and louder so I picked up my phone and started recording her."
The woman is heard telling Love that she's carrying a woman's bag while "living in a man's penis...and body with women's makeup on."
In response to being recorded, the woman tells Love, who is Asian, "What you going to do? Send it to China? What the fuck they gonna do?"
She also calls Love, "garbage," "transvestite," and "homo."
"You sitting over here, recording me while you doin what...suckin' my dick?" the woman tells Love. "You ain't nobody. You a fuckin' homo, gay motherfucker in some fuckin' women's products and whatnot."
She goes on, "What you gonna do in the long run? Do you do this on weekends or is this a everyday event for you? Like you sit up and get on the train everyday like, 'What do people think about me and one day, you cut all your shit off, put your extensions back in, go to work...like who are you really under all that makeup? Where'd you come from? Are you the emperor of China? How are we supposed to act with you? What should we do about you? 'Cause this shit right here ain't appropriate for my child, I'm sorry. I don't give a fuck. I'll fight you right now. I don't even feel comfortable with you right now."
The woman then gets up and swings at Love twice, appearing to strike her, while saying, "Put the camera down, motherfucker."
Love said that people around her could hear the woman's rant but they were "acting like they couldn't hear it, because they were scared, I guess."
Love told BuzzFeed News that she stopped recording when the woman tried to grab her phone.
"She grabbed my stuff and threw everything on the floor," Love said, adding that an older man helped her pick up her stuff after the woman got off the train. She said the woman hit her, but she blocked it.
"No one did anything," she said.
Love, who recently met Hillary Clinton at the LGBT center where she works, said she was "really surprised" by the support she received after posting the video. "It was a good way to educate people," she said.
While friends have been telling her to file a police report, Love said she had many other important things to juggle and this incident was "not the worst one."
Love ended her Facebook post, saying, "Well she has a lot to learn. She need education to how to respect, learn not to be discriminatory against the Trans Community . I am so sad for her children. Have that kind of mother to teach them to grow up to be bigoted assholes."