Dear J.K. Rowling, If You Label Yourself An Activist, Then Act Like One

Dear J.K. Rowling, If You Label Yourself An Activist, Then Act Like One

Grindelwald should have been recast.

Harry Potter fans around the world have been sharing their shock and disappointment at the statement J.K. Rowling released regarding the casting of Johnny Depp as Grindelwald, a main character in the Fantastic Beasts series. When the fans saw that Depp would be portraying him, they were angered because it had already been made known to the public that Depp had abused his ex-wife, Amber Heard, but they hoped that Rowling would rectify the situation.

When I saw Depp make his brief appearance as Grindelwald at the end of the first Fantastic Beasts movie, I looked at the movie theatre screen in disbelief. I was horrified that the Harry Potter franchise, which I have loved deeply throughout my life, now included a man that disgusted me. However, I was certain that Rowling could not have agreed to his casting. I spent the next year after the premiere of Fantastic Beasts feeling the same way because of how much I saw Rowling advocating for women’s rights, so it came as an especially hurtful blow when it began circulating that Rowling had blocked many fans that demanded an explanation for Depp’s casting as Grindelwald.

Some fans defended Rowling for blocking people asking her why Depp was being rewarded with a role in Fantastic Beasts because they were being rude to her in their comments. I think it is absurd to expect people to react calmly when they see a man accused of domestic violence not only be able to continue on with his career as if nothing happened, but also be able to enter the Harry Potter universe, which began with the abuse and neglect that Potter faced as a child. Many fans fell in love with the Harry Potter books and movies because they have also had some sort of experience with abuse and they were able to find comfort in Rowling's creation. I can only imagine how heartbreaking it must have been for those fans to see a known abuser be a part of that same world.

She finally broke her silence a week ago and released a statement where she came out in support of Depp. Rowling explained that she had been alarmed when the allegations came out against him, but then said,

“the filmmakers and I are not only comfortable sticking with our original casting, but genuinely happy to have Johnny playing a major character in the movies.”

I could not believe that the woman I had always seen as a role model had come to the defense of an abuser, and I am saddened that now my opinion of her has changed forever.

In her statement, she also claimed to be frustrated and in pain over the fact that she could not speak as openly about her views on Depp’s casting as she would like, but her stance has been made clear by her joy in having him play Grindelwald. If she was the women's rights activist that she claims to be, she would have been appalled once Depp's abuse was brought to light and then done everything in her power to have his role recast. Instead, she chose to take the comfortable and easy route of ignoring Depp’s crimes and giving him a major role in one of the largest movie franchises in the world.

There is no point in Rowling coming onto Twitter every day and showing her support for women’s rights if when she has to confront those issues in real life she decides to stand against the victim. She has only confirmed to all abusers in the movie industry that they should not be worried about facing any sort of punishment if their actions are exposed because they will most likely be able to continue on with their careers.

Cover Image Credit: News 1st DIGITAL

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11 Things Psychology Majors Hear That Drive Them Crazy

No pun intended.

We've all been there. You're talking to a new acquaintance, or a friend of your parents, or whoever. And then, you get the dreaded question.

"So what are you studying in school?"

Cue the instant regret of picking Psychology as your major, solely for the fact that you are 99.9% likely to receive one of the slightly comical, slightly cliche, slightly annoying phrases listed below. Don't worry though, I've included some responses for you to use next time this comes up in conversation. Because it will.

Quick side note, these are all real-life remarks that I've gotten when I told people I was a psych major.

Here we go.

1. So are you, like, analyzing me right now?

Well, I wasn't. But yeah. Now I am.

2. Ugh so jealous! You picked the easy major.

"Lol" is all I have to say to this one. I'm gonna go write my 15-page paper on cognitive impairment. You have fun with your five college algebra problems, though!

3. So can you tell me what you think is wrong with me? *Shares entire life story*

Don't get me wrong; I love listening and helping people get through hard times. But we can save the story about how one time that one friend said that one slightly rude comment to you for later.

4. Well, s**t, I have to be careful what I say around you.

Relax, pal. I couldn't diagnose and/or institutionalize you even if I wanted to.

5. OMG! I have the perfect first client for you! *Proceeds to vent about ex-boyfriend or girlfriend*

Possible good response: simply nod your head the entire time, while actually secretly thinking about the Ben and Jerry's carton you're going to go home and demolish after this conversation ends.

6. So you must kind of be like, secretly insane or something to be into Psychology.

Option one: try and hide that you're offended. Option two: just go with it, throw a full-blown tantrum, and scare off this individual, thereby ending this painful conversation.

7. Oh. So you want to be a shrink?

First off, please. Stop. Calling. Therapists. Shrinks. Second, that's not a psych major's one and only job option.

8. You know you have to go to grad school if you ever want a job in Psychology.

Not completely true, for the record. But I am fully aware that I may have to spend up to seven more years of my life in school. Thanks for the friendly reminder.

9. So you... want to work with like... psychopaths?

Let's get serious and completely not-sarcastic for a second. First off, I take personal offense to this one. Having a mental illness does not classify you as a psycho, or not normal, or not deserving of being treated just like anyone else on the planet. Please stop using a handful of umbrella terms to label millions of wonderful individuals. It's not cool and not appreciated.

10. So can you, like, read my mind?

It actually might be fun to say yes to this one. Try it out and see what happens. Get back to me.

11. You must be a really emotional person to want to work in Psychology.

Psychology is more than about feeling happy, or sad, or angry. Psychology is about understanding the most complex thing to ever happen to us: our brain. How it works the way it does, why it works the way it does, and how we can better understand and communicate with this incredibly mysterious, incredibly vast organ in our tiny little skull. That's what psychology is.

So keep your head up, psychology majors, and don't let anyone discourage you about choosing, what is in my opinion, the coolest career field out there. The world needs more people like us.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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Short Stories On Odyssey: Roses

What's worth more than red roses?


Five years old and a bouquet of roses rested in her hands. The audience-- clapped away her performance, giving her a standing ovation. She's smiling then because everything made sense, her happiness as bright as the roses she held in her hands.

Fifteen now, and a pile of papers rested on her desk. The teachers all smiled when she walked down the aisle and gave them her presentation. She was content then but oh so stressed, but her parents happy she had an A as a grade, not red on her chest.

Eighteen now and a trail of tears followed her to the door. Partying, and doing some wild things, she just didn't know who she was. She's crying now, doesn't know anymore, slamming her fists into walls, pricking her fingers on roses' thorns.

Twenty-one and a bundle of bills were grasped in her hands. All the men-- clapped and roared as she sold her soul, to the pole, for a dance. She's frowning now because everything went wrong, but she has to stay strong, for rich green money, is worth more than red roses.

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