JK Rowling is often referred to as a TERF, which stands for trans-exclusionary radical feminist. Her alleged views on the trans community are well-documented at this point and the author continues to make her thoughts on trans rights one of her main social media talking points. Her views have obviously been met with a lot of backlash. Recently, the author took to Twitter to tweet screenshots of a YouTube video that included lyrics about killing TERFs, and the poster appeared to name the author as “J.K” in their song. Check out the Tweet below:
While JK Rowling and the trans community often clash, the video has many people on both sides disagreeing with the alleged violent messaging. Much of the outrage comes from Twitter’s reported decision to leave the video up, though it appears the video may have been taken down at the time of this article’s writing.
Members and allies of the trans community have pointed out that Rowling appears to be highlighting the worst responses to her viewpoints, rather than more nuanced takes. Here’s a Tweet as an example:
If the original video is indeed a death threat to JK Rowling, it’s likely that the vast majority of people would condemn that kind of messaging. Though Rowling’s views may be frustrating to many, it’s not something she should receive death threats over. Though it’s not an excuse to threaten the author with violence, it is important to note that the trans community faces disproportionate violence and abuse, including death threats.
JK Rowling is best known as the author of the Harry Potter series of books, which have become a massive media property, spawning movies, spin-off movies, video games, toys, an entire section of a theme park, a stage play, and much much more. The latest entry to the Harry Potter series is the next Fantastic Beasts movie, titled Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore. The movie stars Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander, the magi-zoologist and protagonist of the last two movies. The series had a pretty major casting shakeup after Johnny Depp, who played the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, was asked to leave the movie and was then replaced by Mads Mikkelson. The movie also stars Jude Law as Dumbledore. The Harry Potter universe is also set to release its biggest video game yet, with a recent preview just being released of the upcoming RPG that will let you create your own witch or wizard and explore an 1800s version of Hogwarts.
Harry Potter is one of the most beloved series of all time, with a massive fanbase. As JK Rowling has made many headlines after sharing many of her views in blog posts and updates on Twitter, as well as in interviews, the fan community has become divided. Members and allies of the LGTBQIA+ community who were fans of the franchise had to deal with the conflict of either boycotting the material altogether or forcing themselves to separate the art from the artist. In either scenario, it’s not a great choice to make and it’s likely disappointing for Harry Potter fans to have to continue to make that compromise.
JK Rowling is very active on social media about her views, so it’s unlikely this will be the last we hear of this ongoing back and forth between her and those fighting for trans rights. The Twitter battles are frequent and not far between, so there will likely be more news on this ongoing saga in the near future.