Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling slammed after posting essay some see as transphobic

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    • #326107
      jerry611
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      • Total Posts: 889

      Stars of the “Harry Potter” movie franchise have joined trans activists in standing with the transgender community after the publication of a lengthy essay by author J.K Rowling.

       

      In the 3,600-word piece, published on her website on Wednesday, Rowling explained why she has joined the UK’s polarising trans debate, revealing that she was “a domestic abuse and sexual assault survivor” and held “concerns around single sex spaces.”
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      “I’m mentioning these things now not in an attempt to garner sympathy, but out of solidarity with the huge numbers of women who have histories like mine, who’ve been slurred as bigots for having concerns around single-sex spaces,” Rowling wrote.
      The backlash was immediate. “Trans people are who they say they are and deserve to live their lives without being constantly questioned or told they aren’t who they say they are,” actress Emma Watson, who plays Hermione Granger in the “Potter films,” wrote on Twitter hours later, without mentioning Rowling.
      Watson added that “many other people around the world see you [trans people], respect you and love you for who you are.” The sentiment was reiterated by her co-star Bonnie Wright, who wrote on Twitter: “Transwomen are Women. I see and love you.”
      This split in opinion reveals a wider debate that has raged over trans rights in the UK, where a number of columnists and radical feminists have argued that trans women are not women and should be barred from single-sex spaces like refuges or changing rooms.
      Rowling’s foray into the matter has not only made her one of the highest-profile, and perhaps richest, proponents of the gender critical debate, but trans activists say the author has used her lived experience as a tool to prop up a transphobic worldview.
      “Through her own legitimate experiences of violence, she’s evoked the threat of gender-based violence against women in order to connect it to fear of trans people,” Nim Ralph, a 34-year-old trans activist, told CNN.
      Ralph added “it’s devastating” to see “somebody as powerful — and have as wide a reach as J.K. Rowling — spend her time in the middle of a pandemic, in the middle of a global uprising for black lives, and in the middle of Pride month, write an essay with a lot of misinformation and transphobia.”
      Not the first time Rowling has made comments against transgenders.
    • #326128
      Fasttense
      Participant
      • Total Posts: 816

      I read her article and tweets and she seems to be afraid of trans. There is no indication that supporting trans leads to more violence against women. If a guy is going to dress up to gain access to women only spaces, he is going to do it now, yesterday or tomorrow, no matter what trans rules are out there.

      And children transitioning too young and/or too often sounds like a medical issue that should be regulated with heavy restrictions and fines on doctors.

      So, I’m not sure what she is so afraid of that trans will do I women. I think she needs to continue her counseling and stay out of this issue…..for her own mental health. She really adds nothing to the debate.

    • #326130
      Haikugal
      Moderator
      • Total Posts: 1,645

      I have an unpopular stance I suppose. I have nothing against trans women but I don’t consider them ‘the same’ as a woman if they want to compete in sports. They are trans, born male with male musculature, they are not physically the same.

      Am I a supporter of gay rights? Yes I am, am I a supporter of trans rights, yes I am. Am I a supporter of women’s rights (something that constantly gets put on the back burner) yes, I am. Educate me where I need to improve.

      The DNC “big tent” excludes Nina Turner but includes John Kasich.

      • #326183
        Fasttense
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 816

        Even if you are trans or just naturally have large amounts in your system. It needs to be regulated and restricted as any other performance enhancement drug is.

        But she didn’t mentioned this as an issue…did I miss it?

      • #326224
        jerry611
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 889

        The sports question is more complex and difficult to answer. I dont know of a solution that would make everyone happy. Testosterone is one factor. But there are other factors as well. Such that men tend to have larger hearts, more lung capacity, higher bone density, etc.. On the other side of the debate though is the reality that women sports used to (and sometimes still does) get marginalized over the idea that women are less strong, less competitive, lee endurance, etc, compared to men. In the past, women were barred from a lot of sports over the belief that a woman’s body is fragile and will somehow break if she does too much athletics. It was an excuse of not just keeping them out of sports but certain jobs, the military, or even flying to space. So if we say men are stronger and faster and more athletic than women and that’s why trans athletes need to stay out of women’s sports, then we are sort of falling back into that old way of thinking. And I think that’s what is causing a lot of feminists to really struggle with this debate for fear that belief could propagate into other areas of society. It’s a difficult topic to debate.

        But Rowling, like most TERFs, go well beyond sports and into more deeper social beliefs. TERFs are heavily on the idea that women’s only spaces need to be protected (yet hypocritically don’t believe men’s only spaces should be preserved). So they tend to be very hostile especially towards male-to-female transgenders thinking they are invading the safe space and will put women in danger. They are less hostile towards female-to-male transgenders, but still refuse to recognize their gender identity and instead claim that patriarchy is the only reason a woman wants to be a man.

        TERFs also tend to mirror the far-right when it comes to LGBT issues, which is very problematic. Many times they will ally with them. And whether they realize it or not, TERFs are only helping the right wing continue to keep women and femininity in a strictly defined box. They claim to be against patriarchy, but also seem to help maintain the gender barriers that patriarchy relies on.

    • #326176
      HassleCat
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      • Total Posts: 3,472

      Looking at it from Rowling’s perspective, there are many women who would be shocked and horrified and threatened to  have a trans woman enter a shower room and openly display her penis. Women are being told they need to adjust their thinking, lose their prejudices, get over their baseless fears, and be more accepting of trans women. Women like Rowling believe they are being told to “get over it” and it appears they are. Is that right? Why not tell trans women they should “get over it” when told to use the men’s shower and changing room? Or separate facilities? Who has the superior right? Women like Rowling or trans women?

      • #326178
        Haikugal
        Moderator
        • Total Posts: 1,645

        Thank you @hasslecat you have a compassionate, sensitive stance and I appreciate that. There are ways that all could be accommodated without putting blame or shaming anyone. Sometimes I wonder if these things are blame/shaming for revenge or justice? Either way I don’t see how it helps the cause. I don’t worry personally about sharing a bathroom with men I’ve done it since the 70’s and I don’t think I’d freak out about showering with a trans woman but some women would and I have to think about them also.

        The DNC “big tent” excludes Nina Turner but includes John Kasich.

      • #326187
        Fasttense
        Participant
        • Total Posts: 816

        But she made it sound as if she was more worried about increased violence against women because of trans participation.

        Hmm, I’m not sure if a trans woman with a penis in a group shower would bother me. What bothers me with men in showers is their oggling my body or other women as if we are on display for them. It would bother me even if a woman were doing it.

        My gym shower solved this problem by offering a group of closed door showers in addition to open showers. If you like more privacy, this seems like an easy fix.

        • #326227
          Haikugal
          Moderator
          • Total Posts: 1,645

          I agree @fasttense ogling by either sex would be uncomfortable…no one like being sexualized in that way and women deal with it every day. Yes, having shower doors wouldn’t be that hard to do would they? Privacy doors are a good thing if you want them.

          Yes, Rowling didn’t mention the sports angle that’s what came to mind. She is concerned about abused women and having to deal with the trans penis I think..I understand that and it would be easy to accommodate women or girls who have these issues in my mind.

          The DNC “big tent” excludes Nina Turner but includes John Kasich.

    • #326264
      Bernie Boomer
      Participant
      • Total Posts: 187

      He is a social care worker in the UK, working with the LGBTQ+ youth community (16-25) and offers training courses on trans-issues to schools and businesses. He is also active as an advocate for the trans community. In that position he speaks publicly, and not too long ago, while sitting on a panel, he was told – bluntly and caustically – that he was nothing more than a ‘confused lesbian’ and his maleness was a fiction.

      In other words, he was told he didn’t – and shouldn’t – exist as a human. It’s not the first time someone has told him he shouldn’t exist; just the latest. It won’t be the last time. I’d ask you all to consider, just for comparison, the last time someone told you that you shouldn’t exist.

      I read Rowling’s blog. It is uninformed by facts and disingenuous in nearly every line. I’m sorry that she suffered abuse – no one should ever have to survive that – but her experience in that regard does not give her the authority to make the statements she makes.

      I could go on about this – at length – but instead I’m going to link to an open letter written to J.K. Rowling by Susie Green, the CEO of Mermaids UK – a charity that supports families of transgender children. Susie is a very smart woman and well-respected by most (not TERF’s obviously); I’ve met her a couple of times and came away very impressed.
      I’m impressed with her response to Rowling, too. It is thoughtful and well-informed.

      https://mermaidsuk.org.uk/news/dear-jk-rowling/

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