‘Gender critical feminist’ Posie Parker pays for billboard declaring love for JK Rowling at Edinburgh railway station
One of Britain’s most well-known voices in the “gender-critical movement”, Posie Parker, paid for a poster reading “I ❤ JK Rowling” at Scotland’s busiest railway station.
The poster, stylised like the 1977 state of New York tourism campaign, was installed on Monday (27 July) at Waverly in Edinburgh, where Rowling lived for a time to be near her sister.
Parker explained on a YouTube live stream titled “For the love of Rowling…” that she was “very pleased” with herself, stressing that it “cost a lot of money” to install the sign to celebrate Rowling’s 55th birthday this Friday (31 July).
Posie Parker paid ‘a lot of money’ to have poster praising JK Rowling put up.
Parker, wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the same design as the poster, fuddled with her microphone before saying, “Today, I put a billboard up in Waverly station,” and asking if any viewers have seen it.
She noted that her videos have vastly been demonetised, so urged her followers to donate to her or to purchase her merchandise. “I don’t have a lot of people on Patreon,” she said, as a follower then donated €10 to her.
Parker herself is banned on Twitter. But one user, who describes herself as an “adult human female”, a common anti-trans dogwhistle to invalidate trans women’s existence, spotted the poster that same day.
She uploaded a photograph of herself raising a thumbs-up next to the poster.
— MB (@IresonSuzy) July 27, 2020
Fiction writer has increasingly spoken out on trans rights. Her fans aren’t sure how to handle it.
The Harry Potter fanbase has for years gone on pilgrimages to Edinburgh, where it seems every cobblestone street and cosy café has something to do with the book series.
But in recent weeks, the city has become a sort of pinched battleground for Rowling’s increasingly divided followers. One landmark that celebrates the writer’s ties to the city is a pair of golden handprints of Rowling’s engraved on the grounds outside the City Chambers.
Earlier this month, however, red paint was smeared on the prints while a trans Pride flag was placed beside it. One local told PinkNews that the red paint may symbolise how Rowling has “blood on her hands” for her comments on trans people which some have dubbed “dangerous“.
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Indeed, Harry Potter fans across the world have wrestled with how to reimagine the wizarding world without Rowling in light of her views on trans people.
For years, fans of Rowling have sought to give her the benefit of the doubt. The odd liked tweet. The following of dubiously anti-trans accounts. All “middle-aged moments“, her representatives soothingly said.
Yet, Rowling has steadily risen from her stoop-sitting approach to trans rights – occasional comments and vague gestures – to full-on commentator on trans healthcare and rights.
She has outlined her views on trans people extensively across various Twitter threads and blog posts, plunging her LGBT+ fans into unease as the writer of a book series people have loved for the last 23 years unleashes tirades.
Rowling, who has no formal education or training in healthcare, compared the denounced practice of conversion therapy to the steadily eroded access trans youth have to healthcare, which became a lightning rod for criticism.
PinkNews contacted Posie Parker for comment.