JK Rowling met with tidal wave of anger after using her enormous platform to send string of ‘hateful’ anti-trans tweets
JK Rowling has been met with a tidal wave of queer anger for using her enormous platform to send a string of “anti-trans” tweets during Pride month.
It’s not the first time the billionaire author has made controversial and hurtful statements about the transgender community – but while her PR team has previously blamed her liking “anti-trans” tweets on a “middle-aged moment“, Rowling has now simply doubled down.
Starting on Saturday night (June 7), JK Rowling posted a string of half a dozen tweets that have been shared so widely that “Rowling” and “Trans Women are Women” were both still trending on Twitter come the next morning.
It started when Rowling took issue with an article in Devex, the media platform for the global development community, with the headline: “Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate.”
Rather than directing her followers to, say, organisations fighting inequality during the deadly coronavirus pandemic that they could donate to, or sharing that she’d donated herself, Rowling decided to instead be offended at the phrase “people who menstruate”.
“‘People who menstruate’,” she wrote. “I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”
To the sound of thousands of trans and non-binary people sighing and bracing for what would come next, Rowling sent another string of tweets that went viral across the internet.
“I know and love trans people, but,” was perhaps Rowling’s finest moment, along with claiming that the idea that she hates trans people is “nonsense”.
“I respect every trans person’s right to live any way that feels authentic and comfortable to them,” wrote the author.
Nominating herself spokesperson of the LGBT+ community with, “If sex isn’t real, there’s no same-sex attraction”, white billionaire Rowling ended her Saturday night broadside by retweeting one of the founders of the anti-trans pressure group LGB Alliance.
The LGB Alliance is a UK-based group that has refused to denounce its neo-Nazi supporters, has ties to homophobic right-wing US hate groups, and whose co-founder, Malcolm Clark – the one who JK Rowling retweeted – says there shouldn’t be LGBT+ clubs in schools because of “predatory gay teachers“.
Needless to say, the rage of the queer community at another attack on its most vulnerable siblings was swift.
Harry Potter author’s tweets provoke wave of support for trans community from lesbian, gay and bisexual allies.
With the number of people following JK Rowling on Twitter falling by the minute, trans allies have been quick to make it clear that Rowling’s views are in the minority.
Hundreds of people used the hashtag #IStandWithTransPeople to show that they oppose hateful views about trans people.
Not all women menstruate-children, post-menopausal women, women who are pregant, some women with disabilities, trans women. Not all people who menstruate are women.
You do realise that you are defining womanhood only by the capacity to procreate, just like the patriarchy does? https://t.co/RQog8MwNMM
— Ellen Jones (@ellen__jones) June 6, 2020
Imagine tweeting stuff like this now! When we're in a global pandemic and fighting for black lights and facing irreversible climate change! #IStandWithTransPeople
— Kate Walton (@waltonkate) June 6, 2020
— Laura Davidson (@lovelylaurajd) June 7, 2020
When you think the world can’t get anymore hateful JK Rowling comes along.
— Monika Weber ? (@KmoonlightS) June 7, 2020
Trans people are one of the most marginalised groups of people, with the a massive suicide rate, so obviously j*r*w*i*g decides to target them? For what? So she feels good about her own twitter crusade. #IStandWithTransPeople #obviously #TransRightsAreHumanRights
— Sarah Clark (@SarahClark_2512) June 6, 2020
During Pride month. During the very month dedicated to the struggle for the rights and equality of LGBTQ people. Imagine using your public platform to make life harder for that besieged and oppressed community. #IStandWithTransPeople
— Owen Jones says join a union? (@OwenJones84) June 6, 2020
5/ And to make it explicit, JKR is a transphobe, and like why? What have trans people ever done to you, apart from exist and ask for equal rights?
Trans men are men. Trans women are women. Trans non-binary people are people.
Fuck you if you think different.#IStandWithTransPeople
— Jack Ⓥ (@JackaryWoo) June 7, 2020
LGBT+ advocacy group GLAAD responded proactively with a list of organisations that support Black trans people, for those who want to direct their rightful anger at JK Rowling into something positive.
If you want to direct your rightful anger over JK Rowling's latest anti-trans comments into something positive, support orgs that help Black trans people like @MPJInstitute, @blacktransusa, @TransJusticeFP, @Genderintell and @ukblackpride
— GLAAD (@glaad) June 7, 2020
And yet more people used the hashtag #TransWomenAreWomen to show their support for trans women.
It seems ironic to me that @jk_rowling wrote seven magical books about fighting for tolerance and can't even comprehend how to be an ally in real life. I love her books and her world, but time to unfollow her and her baseless arguments. #TransWomenareWomen
— Nimisha Kumar (@nimishatimbisha) June 7, 2020
Feminist writer outlines support for the trans community after JK Rowling tweets.
Feminist writer Flavia Dzodan, whose work JK Rowling has tweeted about in the past, tweeted her thoughts on the situation to JK Rowling directly.
“Dear @ until now you still follow me, which means maybe you found what I had to say of some interest,” Dzodan said.
“You’re a beloved billionaire children’s author and I’m just a haphazard writer outside traditional publishing but I’d like to say something about harm to trans people.
Dear @jk_rowling until now you still follow me, which means maybe you found what I had to say of some interest. You're a beloved billionaire children’s author and I'm just a haphazard writer outside traditional publishing but I'd like to say something about harm to trans people https://t.co/HvUIARQj1c
— Flavia Dzodan (@redlightvoices) June 7, 2020
While no one tweet can sum of the rage and solidarity of thousands of trans allies, an independent “lending library” in Ireland came close.
“Let’s not let the ‘British boarding schools but magic’ lady take the focus away from the work done today,” tweeted the Small Trans Lending Library, which lends trans-authored books to trans people.
the good news is that instead of reading a certain TERF’s books, you can borrow some unreal trans books from some unreal trans people, for free, delivered to you – catalogue at https://t.co/N45g61NW7B ???
— Small Trans Library Dublin (@smalltranslibr) June 7, 2020