Harry Potter Fan Sites Condemn J.K. Rowling’s Trans Stance

Two of the major fan communities of Harry Potter will be approaching things differently in the future.

Major fan communities of Harry Potter have released an open letter together criticizing J. K. Rowling. They have decided to approach the coverage of the author differently.

The major websites called Mugglenet and LeakyCauldron have released a joint statement about J. K. Rowling’s controversial stance on transgender issues. The websites decided that they would no longer provide links to Rowling’s website.

They further revealed that they would no longer use her photos or encourage or report about any achievements that do not relate to the fiction world. The statement also said that they are against Rowling’s views of “harmful and disproven beliefs about what it means to be a transgender person”. They further said that her views on marginalized people are out of step. And the communities do not stand for anything other than acceptance and empowerment they find in Rowling’s books.

They also revealed that it is difficult for them to speak out against someone they have admired for a very long time. But even then they think it would be wrong if they don’t use their platforms to counteract the harm that she has caused.

The communities together take a clear stance by writing, “Transgender women are women. Transgender men are men. Non-binary people are non-binary. Intersex people exist and should not be forced to live in the binary.” They further state that they support the Harry Potter fans in their communities.

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In the statement, they continue that they do not condone the mistreatment Rowling has received for airing her opinions about transgender people. But they clarify that they must reject her beliefs. The sites also declare that they will be using the author as #JKR so fans can mute the hashtag. They would not have to see any posts about Rowling after that.

They have stated that they would not cover any aspect of the author’s life henceforth. It includes “Rowling’s personal life, such as the author winning awards, her charitable donations. Or her tweets unrelated to the franchise, as well as “her political commentary or opinions. The author’s name has been completely removed from the sites’ interface. Mugglenet decided not to post any memes, fan art, or other images with Rowling’s likeness.

Fortunately for the fans, many cast members of the franchise have come in support of the LGBTQ community. They have neglected Rowling’s views on transgender people. The actors have published comments including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Eddie Redmayne. 

Radcliffe, who doesn’t have a public presence on social media, wrote a heartfelt reply to Rowling’s comments in a blog post for The Trevor Project. It is a non-profit devoted to suicide inhibition among LGBTQ+ youth. “Transgender women are women,” he wrote. “Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo (Rowling) or I.”

J. K. Rowling retweeted an article last month titled “Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate,” Rowling wrote. “‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”

After a whole lot of criticism, Rowling sent out a few more tweets in her defense. Clue, a period tracking app tweeted saying, “Hi @jk_rowling, using non-gendered language is about moving beyond the idea that woman = uterus. Feminists were once mocked for wanting to change sexist language, but it’s now common to say firefighter instead of fireman.”

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Rowling defended herself by clarifying that she has spent the last three years reading books, blogs, and scientific papers by trans people, medics, and gender specialists. She claimed to know exactly what the distinction is. She also told her followers to never assume that because someone thinks differently. “They have no knowledge,” Rowling responded in a since-deleted tweet.

“If sex isn’t real, there’s no same-sex attraction,” Rowling continued. “If sex isn’t real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. She assured saying that she loves trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. Rowling further said that it isn’t portraying hate to speak the truth.

Rowling said it’s “nonsense” to think about the idea of her not backing trans women. Following her various tweets on the transgender community, J. K. Rowling finally acknowledges in a lengthy post defending herself. The author came under fire, opened up in her new blog post, explaining her comments, and describing her own experience. She has been under strong criticism about her thoughts on transgender identity from the LGBTQ community. Eddie Redmayne and Daniel Radcliffe have also been a part of that scrutiny.

“I refuse to bow down to a movement that I believe is doing demonstrable harm in seeking to erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class and offering cover to predators like few before it,” she said.

The author noted that she has been receiving “accusations and threats from trans activists” on Twitter for years. Including blowback over her support for the researcher Maya Forstater in December.

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The famed author proceeded with another thread talking about the concept of biological sex. She said she felt forced to tweet her thoughts about her struggle with domestic abuse and sexual assault. Rowling said she had stepped back from Twitter. Until recently, when she wanted to share her new children’s book “The Ickabog“. Upon her return, she says she was instantly called a “TERF”. It is an acronym for a trans-exclusionary radical feminist. This is an allegation she says, used to scare others. Rowling initially declared her statement with a tweet that simply read, “TERF wars.”

In the essay, Rowling then elaborates on the five reasons she is concerned about the new trans activism. And why she decided to speak out on the matter. 

The first reason is her concern for the future of the causes she sustains. Many of which have importance on providing support to women and children. The second is her worries about the “trans rights movement’s” impact on education and “safeguarding”. And the third concern is defending the freedom of speech.

In her new statement, she clarified why she took issue with that headline: “The ‘inclusive’ language that calls female people ‘menstruators’ and ‘people with vulvas’ strikes many women as dehumanizing and demeaning.” 

Redmayne, who starred in two “Fantastic Beast” films of the “Harry Potter prequel series, disagreed with Rowling’s transphobic comments on Twitter. The Oscar-winning actor says that his transgender friends and colleagues are tired. They get the “constant questioning of their identities.”

In her final point in the essay, Rowling revealed her experience with domestic abuse and sexual assault and her “violent” first marriage. A topic she said she has never discussed openly. She described, due to that experience, when she learns of “a trans woman dying at the hands of a violent man,” she feels “solidarity and kinship.”

“Trans people need and deserve protection,” Rowling wrote. She adds, “Like every other domestic abuse and sexual assault survivor I know, I feel nothing but empathy and solidarity with trans women who’ve been abused by men.”

However, she adds that while she wants trans women to be “safe,” she does not “want to make natal girls and women less safe”.

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She appeared to particularly reprimand Scottish legislation. That would make it easier for a person to obtain legal recognition of their gender identity, according to the BBC

Rowling went on to say that while she faces criticism for speaking her mind on the subject. Instead of tweeting “the approved hashtags,” she will not stop speaking out on the prevailing movement. 

The LGBTQ organization GLAAD stated in response to Rowling’s essay shortly after it published. “It seems JK is good at only one thing: writing fantasy. Her misinformed and dangerous missive about transgender people flies in the face of medical and psychological experts and devalues trans people accounts of their own lives,” a GLAAD spokesperson told CBS News.

“And to all the trans and cisgender youth raised on her books who are now loudly speaking up in support of the trans people you know and love, you are the future and we can’t wait to read and watch the beautiful art you will create,” GLAAD spokesperson continued.

The organization also spoke out about Rowling’s initial tweets on Twitter. Calling her comments “anti-trans” and urging its followers to channel their “rightful anger”. They are urging people to support organizations that help black trans people. 

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