JK Rowling talks about the transgender remarks controversy on latest podcast episode

Ayaan Paul
Ayaan PaulMar 15, 2023 | 14:00

JK Rowling talks about the transgender remarks controversy on latest podcast episode

In the latest episode of her podcast The Witch Trials of JK Rowling, the Harry Potter author discussed the backlash she received after a controversial tweet in 2019.

In the tweet, Rowling had expressed concern about the erasure of the concept of biological sex, leading some to label her a TERF (Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist). The author said that she anticipated the reaction, but was still taken aback by the "absolute fury" that came her way.

Despite the negative feedback, Rowling said that she received support from many fans of the Harry Potter series. She noted that she had received thousands of emails in support of her stance. However, she also acknowledged that the backlash had been difficult for her, both personally and in terms of her family's safety. She said that she had been scared at times, but still stood by her views.

"I stand by every word that I wrote there," she said in the podcast. "But the question is, What is the truth? And I’m arguing against people who are literally saying sex is a construct."
- JK Rowling on The Witch Trials of JK Rowling

Rowling also spoke about her legacy, saying that she did not concern herself with how she would be remembered. "You know, what a pompous way to live your life walking around thinking, 'What will my legacy be?' Whatever, I'll be dead. I care about now. I care about the living."

Despite the controversy surrounding Rowling's views, her Harry Potter series remains immensely popular with the latest Hogwarts Legacy videogame thriving despite recieving flak from trans activists, and the author still has many fans who support her. 

"A ton of Potter fans were still with me. And, in fact, a ton of Potter fans were grateful for what I said."
- JK Rowling on The Witch Trials of JK Rowling

The celebrated author of the Harry Potter series has been facing backlash since 2019 for her history of 'transphobia'. The controversy began with a series of tweets in which Rowling expressed her opposition to allowing transgender women to use women's restrooms, and has since escalated to include her comments in interviews and in her own writing.

JK Rowling's history of transphobia has caused significant controversy and backlash, with many individuals and organisations calling for her to apologise and to change her views. Her comments and views have been criticised for perpetuating discrimination and exclusion against transgender individuals, and for being at odds with the values and themes of her own writing. 

Rowling has defended her views, stating that she believed in the importance of sex as a biological fact and that allowing transgender women to use women's restrooms would be a violation of women's privacy and safety. She also expressed concerns about the impact of gender identity on women's rights, arguing that allowing transgender women to identify as women would erode the legal protections that have been put in place to protect women from discrimination.

Rowling's comments were met with widespread criticism from members of the transgender community, as well as from allies and supporters. Many accused her of promoting harmful and exclusionary views that perpetuated discrimination and prejudice against transgender individuals. Some also pointed out that Rowling's views were at odds with the values and themes of her own writing, which promoted tolerance, diversity, and inclusion.

While Rowling has continued to defend her views and to argue that she is not transphobic, the backlash against her has continued to grow, and she has faced criticism from fans, industry professionals, and organizations that have previously worked with her.

The Witch Trials of JK Rowling is hosted by Megan Phelps-Roper, a former member of the Westboro Baptist Church, known for its extreme anti-LGBTQ+ views. Phelps-Roper left the church and has since become an advocate for tolerance and understanding. In the podcast's first episode, she explains her interest in Rowling's story, as the author who was once condemned as Satanic by the far-right Westboro is now being denounced by the Left.

Last updated: March 15, 2023 | 14:00
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