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JK Rowling continues to use her vast power, wealth and platform to... demean trans people

In the midst of a global pandemic and Black Lives Matter protests, the 'Harry Potter' author has decided to punch down.

2020-06-08

JK Rowling, the world's most famous children's author, a woman whose net worth last year was estimated to BE £750 million, and who boasts over 14 million followers on Twitter alone, has decided to use her vast power, wealth and platform to demean one of the world's most oppressed minority groups.

As the world deals with the coronavirus crisis and Black Lives Matter protests continue in cities around the world, the Harry Potter writer used her weekend to mock an article for using trans-inclusive language, before posting a series of hostile tweets directed at the trans community.

Sharing an article about the implications of Covid-19 for menstruation and health, Rowling mocked language which was worded to included transgender men, who may also menstruate.

‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?", Rowling tweeted.

The comments sparked a swift backlash online, as one followers urged Rowling to "please speak to some queer people".

In response, Rowling argued that she'd received support over her trans-exclusionary views from... a cisgender woman.

"One of my best mates just called me. Self-described butch lesbian. It was hard to tell, because she was shouting quite loudly, but I could just make out ‘FUCKING YES!’," she wrote.

In response to another follower who described her as a 'TERF' - a trans-exclusionary radical feminist - Rowling replied: "‘Feminazi’, ‘TERF’, ‘bitch’, ‘witch’. Times change. Woman-hate is eternal."

Following an outpouring of criticism, Rowling doubled down on her anti-trans language, incorrectly conflating sex and gender and accusing trans people of "erasing the concepted of sex" and therefore "the lived reality of women".

"If sex isn’t real, there’s no same-sex attraction. If sex isn’t real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. It isn’t hate to speak the truth", the author wrote.

"The idea that women like me, who’ve been empathetic to trans people for decades, feeling kinship because they’re vulnerable in the same way as women - ie, to male violence - ‘hate’ trans people because they think sex is real and has lived consequences - is a nonsense.

"I respect every trans person’s right to live any way that feels authentic and comfortable to them. I’d march with you if you were discriminated against on the basis of being trans. At the same time, my life has been shaped by being female. I do not believe it’s hateful to say so."

Attitude columnists Amrou Al-Kadhi and Juno Dawson were among those who condemned Rowling's posts.

"This is such a common mythology spewed by transphobes. Trans people are not an ideological collective trying to erase the idea of biological sex", wrote Al-Kadhi.

"Trans people are 0.6% of the population whose gender identity doesn’t match to their assigned sex, and they are just trying to live."

Dawson, author of works including This Book is Gay and The Gender Games, added: "We’re in a global pandemic. We’re protesting police brutality and racial injustice, and the most famous author in the world is twisting linguistic pretzels to say 'trans women are not women'."

"Honestly, I’m exhausted. I can’t believe imma have to block her for my mental health."

If you want to show solidarity with the trans community, visit Mermaids UK for more information and to help support gender-diverse kids, young people and their families.