Progressive LA Council Candidate Revealed As Transphobic Troll

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The online double life of a small-business owner and Los Angeles City Council candidate has shocked progressives in the city of angels.

Joe Bray-Ali, who billed himself as a bike activist as well as a tireless advocate for “safe streets” in his neighborhood of North East Los Angeles, apparently spent his free time commenting on racist memes and making bewilderingly stupid comments about trans people.

LAist was the first news site to unearth Bray Ali’s callous diatribes, including his belief that gender surgery for transgender people should be “criticized as a shameful excess.” Many of his other comments were found in a forum with a shockingly offensive title that denigrates black people.

On a post titled, “Sheboons fighting at the gas station,” Bray-Ali calls the cameraman a “fucking retard” and mentions that anyone with long hair would be “fucked” if fighting with a “chick with a weave.” On another thread, Ali ponders how much cash a vote could reasonably fetch.

The forums were hosted by a website called Voat, established as a haven for trolls expelled from Reddit. Bray-Ali commented under an alias he’d previously used as a blogger, which is how LAist discovered his identity.

Bray has since apologized for his comments, saying that he was “ignorant at the time.”

Unsurprisingly, he’s since lost endorsements from the East Ara Progressive Democrats, as well as City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell.

While crucifying a politician for their online foibles has become a bloodspot on social media, Bray-Ali seems fairly deserving of his fall from grace.

About The Author

Steven Blum is the digital editor of FourTwoNine. He's written for Vice's Broadly, The Stranger, Blackbook Magazine, Tablet and the Daily Dot.

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