A group of transgender activists got into a physical altercation with anti-trans feminists in London’s Hyde Park last week.
A video posted to YouTube shows the altercation between a group of transgender people and members of the Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists (TERFs) in Speaker’s Corner on Wednesday.
TERFs, a fringe element in mainstream feminism, deny the validity of trans people’s self-affirmed gender and are known to ally with anti-feminist and anti-LGBT groups to work against transgender rights.
The incident took place after dozens of TERFs were in the park to find out the clandestine location of a talk titled “What Is Gender? The Gender Recognition Act And Beyond.”
The event, was rescheduled after New Cross Learning backed out of hosting it due to safety concerns—members of Goldsmiths University’s LGBTQ+ Society threatened to stage a protest, along with Sisters Uncut, and Action For Trans Health London and other groups.
In the park scuffle, 60-year-old Maria MacLachlan, who identifies as a “gender-critical feminist,” was knocked to the ground and punched in the face.
“These student-looking types were turning up and some arguments started to take place but I kept well out of it,” she told the Mail. “I thought, ’I can film this, it will be interesting.’ They were getting louder and louder. Then suddenly someone tried to grab my camera. It was scary. Someone kept trying to get my camera. I think it was a girl, but I couldn’t tell because they had a hoodie over their eyes.”
She later identified her attacker as a trans woman, adding that her camera was destroyed and memory card stolen. “I didn’t go to hospital but it has really shaken me up.”
On Facebook, MacLachlan called trans advocates “men’s rights activists” and “the lowest of the low.”
— Juliet (@Jsoosty) September 14, 2017
Action for Trans Health London said in a statement, “We condemn violence against women in all forms. We’re proud that many self-organizing activists, allies and supporters stood against hatred, misogyny and intimidation.”