Here’s some stuff that’s going on: It’s Pride Month, people all over the world are marching against racial injustice and police violence, Trump deployed a private security force in Washington D.C. that convinced even the bad-take New York Times to use the term “secret police,” and the coronavirus is still an ongoing concern. Evidently, J.K. Rowling has decided that not enough people are talking about her and the plight of wealthy white women everywhere, so she felt the need to hop on Twitter and offer some more terrible opinions about trans people. Regardless of the bad stuff she has to say (and we’ll get to that), it should be abundantly clear to anyone with a shred of decency that now is not the fucking time.
And yet, here we are. Rowling’s inadvertent advertisement for why some rich people shouldn’t be allowed to run their own social media was prompted by an article on Devex called “Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate.” Rowling objected to the inclusive phrase “people who menstruate,” posting, “I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?” (Here’s a Medium post if you want to know why people are offended by this, beyond its generally snotty tone.)
Rather than immediately backing down, as she should have, Rowling kept going. One particular highlight is her declaration that “it isn’t hate to speak the truth,” which is such a bullshit absolute that it could be used by literally anyone to justify whatever they want. She’s saying you can’t accuse her of hating trans women because what she’s saying about them is “the truth.” So what if some people think her “truth” is transphobic? There’s nothing they can say, because she decided that it’s “the truth.” Someone tell Donald Trump about this brilliant technique, because it seems right up his alley.
Meanwhile, GLAAD has posted a message asking followers to redirect their “rightful anger” over Rowling’s tweets into something more positive. The organization also posted that Rowling is preaching “an ideology which willfully distorts facts about gender identity and people who are trans” and that “there is no excuse for targeting trans people in 2020.”
If you want to support LGBTQ youth, consider donating to GLSEN, which promotes anti-bullying initiatives and gay-straight alliances in schools nationwide, and The Trevor Project, which operates a confidential hotline staffed by trained counselors who provide crisis-intervention and suicide-prevention services.