Ms. Narcisse, a black transgender woman, said that she has received more support from whites, and that she is on edge around African-Americans because she does not think they will stand with her if she is attacked.
“We’re considered a joke,” she said. “They still look at us as men dressing up, playing in women’s clothes, which is not the case.”
Many black people’s views on transgender people come in part from the central role that religion and the church play in black life, several transgender people said. It also stems from an emphasis on hypermasculinity in black culture, which has deep roots in black men having to use physical strength to survive generations of oppression, they said.
“To be seen as feminine if you’re seen as a black male is a sign of weakness,” said Kiara St. James, the director of the New York Transgender Advocacy Group.
That attitude could mean grim consequences for black transgender people.
Some black men who knowingly engage in relationships with transgender women might become ashamed when others find out, turning violent against their partners, advocates said. Ms. St. James recalled being sexually assaulted in the streets of Flatbush, Brooklyn, by an acquaintance. When she asked passers-by for help, her attacker told them that she was transgender, and the would-be helpers instead mocked her.
Although the raw numbers are small, estimates suggest that transgender people are killed at a much higher rate than the general population. While the chance of a young adult being murdered is 1 in 12,000, that probability increases to 1 in 2,600 for young, black transgender women, according to an analysis by the news organization Mic. At least 111 people who were transgender or did not identify with a gender were killed between 2010 and 2016, the report said, with nearly three in four of them being black women or people who presented as feminine.
Lil Duval’s comments on the radio show, which aired on July 28, spoke to these grim statistics. The morning show on Power 105.1 — featuring the hosts DJ Envy, Angela Yee and Charlamagne Tha God — is known for its edgy interviews with celebrities, who have ranged from rappers to Hillary Clinton, who went on the show just weeks before last year’s election.
The controversy with the Duval interview started when one of the hosts asked him what he thought of President Trump’s proposed ban on transgender people serving in the military….