India Clarke is the 10th Trans Woman Murdered This Year

For the tenth time this year, that we know, a trans woman of color has been murdered in the United States. Twenty-five-year-old India Clarke was a black trans woman who lived in Tampa, Florida and was studying cosmetology. Her mother said that she “was a good-hearted person, a very loving person.” Her murdered body was found this morning in a park in her hometown.

India Clarke

India Clarke

This news comes the same week when another black trans woman, Ashley Diamond, is reported being raped in the same prison she’s been trying to escape due to safe housing concerns and another black trans woman, Megan Taylor was arrested for being black and trans. These stories have been a harsh reminder of just how little society values the lives of black trans women, even at a time when trans people are experiencing more coverage and supposedly, more acceptance, than ever before.

Clarke joins 17-year-old Mercedes Williamson, 20-year-old Papi Edwards, 30-year-old Lamia Beard, 24-year-old Ty Underwood, 33-year-old Yazmin Vash Payne, 36-year-old Taja de Jesus, 21-year-old Penny Proud, 47-year-old Kristina Grant Infiniti and 21-year-old London Kiki Chanel on the list of trans women murdered so far this year. Twenty-two-year-old Bri Golec might also be on the list, but there have been mixed reports from friends on whether or not they were trans. More than half of these women have been black. Last year there was a total of twelve trans women reported murdered in the US, just two more than those murdered in the first seven months of this year.

Police are asking that anyone with information call the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office at 813-247-8200.

Mey Valdivia Rude is a bisexual Latina trans woman living in Los Angeles. She's a writer, comic consultant and a trans activist. She's a bruja, a femme, a pop princess and she loves comic books, witches, dinosaurs and crying. She has a cat named Sawyer and a very successful twitter.

Mey has written 574 articles for us.

25 Comments

  1. I don’t understand WHY people are so fearful or angry that violence is necessary – it makes NO SENSE. Someone of a different gender presentation or different style of dress is NOT A FREAKING THREAT! It’s not logical or rational! The only issue is within the person committing the violence.

  2. Thank you for sharing this, Mey, as much as it hurts to read the same headlines about black trans women over and over while cis people around the world pat themselves on the back for accepting Caitlyn Jenner.

  3. It doesn’t make the violence any less devastating, but progress in any area of civil rights usually prompts a backlash by the people who feel the most threatened by change. The baby steps we’ve made toward a more accepting society might be a factor in the hatred and ignorance coming to light now.

  4. THIS IS MY HOMETOWN!!! Thankfully many people reached out to the news to tell them their reporting was unacceptable so my faith in fellow humans isn’t utterly destroyed. If you live in Tampa please come out to the vigil Friday downtown!

  5. Anybody who makes the insane connection that “more coverage = more acceptance”, really makes me shake my head. It always seems desperately quick a conclusion leap; almost like a “now will you shut up about it already?” vibe going on. Like they’re fed up of our talking about it. Like they… don’t accept us??? Perhaps? !

    For anyone who shares a trait that would place them on annual death lists, this gives me pause and confidence whenever someone (inevitably often) tries to sideshelve, discredit or downplay my enthusiasm for it as trivial or unnecessary. I just step back and think of the words “annual death list”. And then their attempted discouragement is at-once rendered easily pathetic.

    Always the sadness at hearing these tragedies turns to bitter fire, and always must we fight until it stops – everyone in whichever ways we can; they all count. There should never, ever be any such thing. One person is already a world’s population of people too many.

    As for the intersection with racism, I can only cringe, and wince, and always try to keep in the front of my mind the fact that I can’t ever fully comprehend.

  6. I am a trans woman. I don’t know how to process this. Each murder and suicide is another cut on my heart and a reminder that it could happen to me. I’m not really able to get too involved with discussions about these deaths.

    I don’t know what to say other than I don’t have a lot of faith in the overall world embracing us in my lifetime. My simplest hope is for every trans woman to be allowed at least enough privilege to to search for, carve out and fight for whatever small slivers of love, acceptance and safer spaces we can make available for ourselves while we are still alive.

    I’m tired of mourning the tragedies. It hurts me in deep places that I’m not willing to just readily post up on random forums for the world to see.

  7. Hey you forgot some girls on your list of trans women killed this year. Mya Hall, Laura Vermont, and all the other trans women killed in Brazil. tbh im struggling to find an accurate list, but coming up with nothing =( my sisters are dying and their names are being forgotten </3

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