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Jonathan Ross U-turns after tone deaf defence of JK Rowling but stops short of apologising for cisplaining transphobia

Patrick Kelleher June 9, 2020
Jonathan Ross (L) has backed JK Rowling amid a torrent of criticism for the author tweets on trans lives. (Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images/Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Jonathan Ross (L) has backed JK Rowling amid a torrent of criticism for the author tweets on trans lives. (Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images/Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Jonathan Ross has rowed back on his defence of JK Rowling and said he doesn’t agree that “only women menstruate” following widespread backlash.

Harry Potter author Rowling continues to face backlash after she posted a series of anti-trans tweets last weekend in which she argued that only women can menstruate.

Television presenter Ross quickly jumped into the fray to defend Rowling, calling her “both right and magnificent” – but he has since backtracked after his daughters gave him a stern talking to.

Jonathan Ross backtracks on his defence of JK Rowling after his daughters talked to him about trans issues.

Writing on Twitter last night, Ross said: “Those who know me will concede I try to be thoughtful and not a d**k.

“Having talked to some people (OK, my daughters) re my earlier tweet, I’ve come to accept that I’m not in a position to decide what is or isn’t considered transphobic.”

He added: “It’s a wildly sensitive subject. Let’s keep talking.”

Shortly before, Ross was quizzed by comedian Sofie Hagen on Twitter if he agrees with Rowling that only women menstruate.

Having talked to some people (OK, my daughters) re my earlier tweet, I’ve come to accept that I’m not in a position to decide what is or isn’t considered transphobic.

He replied: “Hi. No I don’t share that particular opinion.”

Ross was widely criticised yesterday when he took it upon himself to tell trans people across the planet that he and JK Rowling are responsible for deciding what is and isn’t transphobic.

The presenter tweeted: “For those accusing [JK Rowling] of transphobia, please read what she wrote. She clearly is not.”

His daughter Honey Ross slammed the Harry Potter author for her anti-trans tweets.

Bizarrely, many high-profile LGBT+ people and activists later noticed that they had been blocked on Twitter by Ross – including trans woman Juno Dawson, Calum McSwiggan and some PinkNews staff members.

Ross’s back-peddling comes after his daughter Honey Ross shared her less-than-impressed reaction to Rowling’s tweets.

Honey, a screenwriter and body image activist, slammed Rowling in two posts to her Instagram stories on Sunday night (June 7).

One was a screen capture of a tweet by i-D junior editor Róisín Laingan that read: “JK Rowling really look at a world protesting en masse against racism and police brutality and said: ‘You know what, this is the perfect time to use my platform to remind everyone I hate trans people?'”

Honey also posted on Instagram an edited version of the front cover of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, retitled: “Harry Potter and the Audacity of This B***h.”

More: anti-trans, Honey Ross, JK Rowling, Jonathan Ross, periods, transphobia

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