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This bookshop is making a donation to trans children’s charity Mermaids every time they sell a JK Rowling book

Vic Parsons February 13, 2020
JK Rowling

Harry Potter author JK Rowling was accused of transphobia for a second time in December 2019.

Feminist London bookshop The Second Shelf is donating money to transgender children’s charity Mermaids every time they sell a book by JK Rowling.

The bookshop, which has proudly spelled out its support for trans and non-binary people in the past, announced its plans in a February 12 tweet.

“Making a donation to Mermaids every time we sell J K Rowling,” The Second Shelf tweeted.

The bookshop, which opened in Soho in 2018 and only sells books by women, added: “Donation made this morning! A small amount, but we look forward to more opportunities to contribute to this vital organization.”

Harry Potter author JK Rowling was accused of transphobia for a second time in December 2019.

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

The writer, 54, hadn’t tweeted since September, but made a surprise return to come out in support for Maya Forstater, who lost a landmark legal case, also in December.

Forstater said she lost her job for tweeting “gender-critical” views. She lost her case because a judge deemed her opinions “absolutist”.

Forstater had said the landmark case could establish that “gender-critical views” are a protected belief under the 2010 Equality Act.

But the judgment found that “gender-critical” views are not protected under the Equality Act 2010, noting that they are “not worthy of respect in a democratic society” and that they conflict with the fundamental human rights of others.

Online reaction to The Second Shelf’s support was overwhelmingly positive.

Mermaids, the UK charity that supports trans and gender-questioning young people, simply replied to The Second Shelf with “wizard” and a wizard emoji.

Activist and author Natasha Devon also replied with just one word: LEGENDS.


The Second Shelf offers customers rare and antiquarian books, modern first editions, ephemera, manuscripts, and rediscovered works by women.

Several people pointed out that this was a similar scheme to carbon offsetting, but for those with anti-trans views.

And others pledged to follow The Second Shelf’s example and donate to organisations that support trans people whenever buying merchandise from the Harry Potter empire.

More: Harry Potter, JK Rowling, maya forstater, mermaids, the second shelf

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