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JK Rowling accused of transphobia – again. This time for defending ‘feminist’ fired for anti-trans views

Josh Milton December 19, 2019
JK Rowling transitioned attends the 70th EE British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) at Royal Albert Hall on February 12, 2017 in London, England. (John Phillips/Getty Images)

JK Rowling attends the 70th EE British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) at Royal Albert Hall on February 12, 2017 in London, England. (John Phillips/Getty Images)

Harry Potter author JK Rowling has voiced her support for a woman who pursued legal action to have “gender-critical views” protected under the UK Equalities Act.

The writer, 54, hasn’t tweeted since September, but made a surprise return to come out in support for Maya Forstater, who was plunged into a landmark case which tested whether anti-trans views would be considered as a protected characteristic under the 2010 Equalities Act.

Forstater’s employer, the Centre for Global Development, had hired her on a series of short-term contracts as a researcher which were not renewed after a dispute about her tweet in September 2018 which said: “Men cannot change into women.”

Forstater branded it as a “feminist test case” on her Twitter, yet judges ultimately ruled that such views would not be protected. A ruling welcomed by many LGBT+ activists.

Following the outcome, Rowling expressed her support for Forstater, inciting a wave of backlash from trans folk and allies alike, accusing Rowling of “transphobia” in a take dubbed by one campaigner as a “gross mischaracterisation”.

What did JK Rowling write exactly?

Following the outcome of the test case today, Rowling issued a short statement on her Twitter outlining: “Dress however you please.

“Call yourself whatever you like. Sleep with any consenting adult who’ll have you.

“Live your best life in peace and security.

“But force women out of their jobs for stating that sex is real?”

Rowling then added the hashtags: “#IStandWithMaya #ThisIsNotADrill.”

She was announcing her support of Forstater after judges stated that “gender-critical” views – a phrase often deployed to defend trans-exclusionary feminism– are “not worthy of respect in a democratic society”.

Moreover, Rowling’s tweet came after she came under fire for a similar situation in which she followed a “proud transphobe” on Twitter alongside when she liked a series of tweets that called trans women “men in dresses.”

Her representatives told PinkNews in 2018 that the latter was down to a “clumsy, middle-aged moment”.

While Forstater herself also acknowledged Rowling’s tweet, writing: “We are all crying.

“This is all I wanted for Christmas.”

‘This hurt to read’: Twitter accuses JK Rowling of being a ‘TERF’. 

Within minutes of Rowling’s message, her name quickly became a trending topic on Twitter alongside the tag “TERF”.

Countless LGBT+ Twitter users shared their responses to Rowling, with many criticising her stance, calling it “unacceptable” as well as describing their own “heartbreak” at the beloved children’s book author stating such views.

“This hurt to read,” one user wrote.

“The implications of your statement are huge for the trans community. Hogwarts was a shelter for us weirdos and oddballs but it seems we are no longer welcome.”

“Trans people are real. Intersex people are real. Bigotry is very real,” wrote another user.

“Denying trans and intersex people’s rights and identities is dangerous and unacceptable.”

“My daughter, who is trans, is a big fan of yours,” a user said.

“It breaks my heart to see you post something indicating that discrimination against her is perfectly fine behaviour for an employee.

“The world’s most credible medical orgs affirm trans people. Please catch up.”

And several users contrasted Rowling with Harry Potter film star Emma Watson, who last year unabashedly came out as an ally to trans folk.

Furthermore, one of the largest LGBT+ rights advocacy groups, the Human Rights Campaign, even commented on the ensuing row over Rowling:

And, in what is Twitter’s legal obligation, people made a lot of memes:

 

Rowling’s representatives declined to comment when approached by PinkNews.

More: Harry Potter, JK Rowling, maya forstater

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