Protesters interrupt CNN equality town hall to address transgender murder

Protesters interrupt CNN equality town hall to address transgender murder

Demonstrators interrupted CNN's LGBTQ town hall Thursday to draw attention to a growing number of killings of transgender individuals across the country.

Protesters holding transgender flags came within feet of South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegThe Memo: Centrists change tone of Democratic race Poll: Biden holds 20-point lead in South Carolina Sanders reclaims second place in new 2020 poll MORE and moderator Anderson Cooper shortly after Buttigieg took the stage. 

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"Trans people are dying. Do something...trans live matter," the demonstrators yelled as other individuals appeared to attempt to move them out of the audience.  

"Let me just point out there is a long and proud tradition in history in the gay and lesbian and transgender community of protest, and we applaud them for their protests," Cooper said to applause. "They are absolutely right to be angry and upset at the lack of attention particularly in the media." 

Buttigieg quickly acknowledged the protesters, as well as the recent murders of transgender individuals, in particular, trans women of color. 

"I do want to acknowledge what these demonstrators were speaking about, which is the epidemic of violence against black trans women in this country right now," Buttigieg said. 

Twenty-one transgender individuals have been killed in the U.S. this year. The majority of the victims are trans women of color. 

The American Medical Association labeled the recent surge in transgender murders "an epidemic."