J. K. Rowling faces backlash after sharing transphobic views on Twitter

Aug 17, 2020 | News

J.K Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, has shared transphobic views Twitter in the past. (Flickr)
Abhinav Mendhe

Noah Ramsammy, an Applied Sciences student at the University of Guelph-Humber, felt the sting of J. K. Rowling’s transphobic tweets.

“Hearing that an author who was so inspiring and loved by many people is someone who discriminates against people like me is hurtful,” Ramsammy said.

Rowling deleted her recent interaction with author Stephen King and later stopped following him on Twitter after King tweeted, “Trans women are women.”

Rowling wrote a transphobic tweet on June 6, 2020, which immediately drew criticism from transgender people, activists and allies.

“Rowling’s recent transphobic tweets were something I tried to avoid looking at before,” Ramsammy, who is transgender, said.

Rowling later said on Twitter that only women menstruate, being ignorant about trans women and non-binary people. She continued defending her opinion and eventually stopped tweeting.

Thousands of people reacted to the tweet, criticized the author, and endeavored to convince her that transgender men, and other non-binary individuals, also menstruate. (Twitter)

“I am transgender female to male, and I am still in the process of learning to accept and love myself despite internalized transphobia,” Ramsammy said.

“My journey so far has been amazing,” Ramsammy said. “It was a rough start at first: I lived as a female for most of my life, I then came out as lesbian, then again as non-binary, until I finally came out as a transgender man roughly one year ago.

“We want our voices about matters that concern us to be heard,” he said.

Indigo Books and Music, a Canadian bookstore chain, released a statement on June 26, calling out the author.

“Indigo stands firmly and positively with the transgender community,” read a statement posted on Instagram.

“It is disappointing to us that J.K. Rowling, an author we admired and supported and that our customers have so supported, would make statements so inconsistent with our values. The identities of all transgender people must be respected without question and judgment,” Indigo Books and Music said on its official Instagram account.

The three actors who comprised of the famous trio from Harry Potter opposed Rowling on her take on the matter.

Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter in the film series, said in a lengthy statement transgender women are women.

Emma Watson, who played Hermione Granger, and Rupert Grint, who played Ron Weasley, also issued supporting statements toward trans rights.

Accompanying them were Bonnie Wright, who played Ginny Weasley, Eddie Redmayne, who played Newt Scamander, and Warner Bros, the studio behind Harry Potter movies.