Earlier this week, the Harry Potter author wrote an essay to, for lack of better words, "justify" why people were targeting her with labels and accusations of being a "terf" or "transphobic." This has caused outrage within the Harry Potter fandom, and people are feeling uncomfortable declaring their interest in the series, unable to remove the author from art.
In her essay, JK Rowling stated that this was the worst generation to be a woman and she "feared bringing up her daughters" in it. Her eldest daughter, at 26, is the same age as I am, and I completely disagree. We are seeing CEO's that are women of color who are both starting their own businesses or heading Fortune 500's.
Her books only refer to women of color for tokenism purposes, at best.
By allowing them a space in the story, but not developing their characters it inadvertently states "I see you, but this is all I'm allotting you." She has also retroactively revealed additional "inclusive" subject matter such as Dumbledore's sexuality, and Hermione's race - but only once her own profits have not been impacted.
Had she stopped to consider, when originally writing the Harry Potter series, that she was advised to use a pseudonym as people, particularly boys, in the 90s would not want to read a book written by a woman. Over the last decade, a substantial amount of Young Adult book series have been authored by women who have not refrained from using their own names.
"Twilight," "Hunger Games," and "Divergent" are examples of these young adult female-authored series that have also created film franchises.
The reason she claimed this was the worst time to be a woman was due to the over-sexualization of females.
If that is true, then she is, once again, a part of the problem in the context of the new Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them movies, where Nagini is revealed to be an animagi of an attractive, scantily-clad, Korean woman.
Secondly, her statement and reasoning of not supporting a UK act of being able to apply for a gender-change certificate without wanting to undergo surgery is appalling. She seems to be educated in the differences between sex and gender, but in her essay continued to use them interchangeably.
Her reasoning stems from a fear that men will claim they're women, enter a ladies' room to dominate or enact depraved actions against women. This is one of the most debunked myths as research, unfortunately, shows that trans people are more likely to be victims in those kinds of situations.
Not to mention, people are also statistically more likely to be attacked by people they know personally.
Also, in "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets," Harry and Ron (two cisgender boys) literally enter a girl's bathroom to perform illegal actions by brewing a dangerous and unsupervised potion at the age of 12.
She bases these fears of her own past trauma, but the fact that she is using her platform to spread misinformation and prejudice rather than educating herself, or seeking help and resources (which she can obviously afford) to cope with her past experiences is disappointing.
It's common knowledge, as an overwhelming amount research shows, that due to the themes and morals expressed in the books, that Harry Potter fans tend to be more liberal and accepting of minorities - including LGBTQ people. So to actively put down people who have given her money and want to continue to support her is also disheartening.
She also addresses another fear.
Since transgender awareness and activism is trending or being highlighted, it may influence kids to make what she might view as a "stupid decision." Unfortunately, the transgender community is still very much discriminated against, and a trending hashtag won't change that.
This likely leads to her fear of people who "de-transition", which is a heavily emphasized point in her essay. But what she fails to acknowledge is that this is not an emotionally, socially, psychologically, or financially lighthearted decision and people who are seriously considering transitioning would seek out support or resource groups — or at the very least, do their research and educate themselves about the matter via the Internet.
The tone of the essay she wrote sounds as if she is trying to moderate a situation that she has no stake in. I do not have a personal stake in this either, but I never tell others how they should or should not live their lives - especially regarding matters that don't concern me or my life.