Note to Stupid People: No, this is not some anti-Trans wankfest. I fully support Trans rights and the human rights of all the LGBT. This is in defense of everyone’s right to Free Speech and Free Expression.
I really didn’t want to write this; I’d prefer to stay out of melodramatic nonsense related to celebrities as I detest any sort of celebrity-related gossip, but then I found what was quite possibly the dumbest article on the anti-Trans controversy related to JK Rowling by someone named Ani Bundel titled “HBO Max’s ‘Harry Potter’ streaming plans would give J.K. Rowling an undeserved platform” and the contents were just too stupid to not criticize. I wouldn’t have concerned myself, except I was recommended it on my phone through Google and it was posted on the mainstream NBC website. Ani Bundel’s article contained the most thoughtless and asinine arguments that ran amok of the worst forms of shallowness, bigotry, and malevolence that has become so normalized in self-proclaimed “Progressive” circles that seem keen on categorically ignoring the legal and ethical dilemmas their narcissistic views are creating against Free Speech. It has become increasingly and painfully clear that “postmodernism” of so-called Progressives is just a catch-all term for unfettered narcissism and entitlement whereby anything that provides a critical or disagreeable viewpoint is maligned as evil. This “Progressivism” portrays itself as defending some nebulous future while burdening everyone else with the costs. Within this so-called “Progressive” and “postmodernist” framework, it is incumbent on the rest of the world to adhere and obey a strict guideline whereby only the so-called downtrodden can ever be seen as ethical and correct and any criticism or facts spoken against them is seen as harboring an evil motive. Despite even the dangers of the Capitol Hill insurrection whereby Trump supporters became so deluded due to the QANON conspiracy theory to the point it was used to mobilize violence against the federal government to shutdown the peaceful transition of power for then President-Elect Joe Biden, it somehow still hasn’t been drilled into the brains of my fellow dumbass countrymen here in the US, that Conservative Postmodernism is partly or possibly wholly to blame for nearly toppling US democracy. Yes, that’s right, a form of postmodernism. What’s that? An ideology that teaches you to pay attention to your feelings and not factual evidence to delude yourself into your own bubble against the real world is responsible for people acting completely psychotic? It’s almost as if there’s no meaningful difference between a philosophical view that tells you to live in your own delusions and the maladaptive psychological state in which people lose touch with reality and believe in things that aren’t real! Indeed, postmodernism seems like an excuse for people’s narcissistic proclivities with the excuse that their poverty and lower self-esteem is always at jeopardy if everyone in the world doesn’t follow their beck and call instead of them growing a spine and learning to accept that other people have different personal views from theirs.
JK Rowling has odious Anti-Trans views. Okay, now please answer the following questions honestly:
- Has she ever donated any of her money to Anti-Trans Causes?
- Does anything in the content of the Harry Potter series indicate malevolence towards Transgender people?
- If someone harbors odious Anti-Trans views, does that justify removing or demanding the cancellation of everything that they’ve ever worked on or every topic they want to speak about, even when the content has absolutely nothing to do with disparaging Trans rights?
- Does maligning, harassing, or canceling anyone who makes it clear that they have disagreeable or odious views against Trans people actually help Trans activism? Does it make the world safer for Transgender people who are thrown out of their homes, hunted down and murdered, or otherwise discriminated against? Does it do anything to decrease Transgender killings?
- Does widening this delusional “post-modernism” bubble until everyone submits to it actually prevent the dehumanization of Transgender people or would listening to and then criticizing odious views be more effective in the service of Trans rights activism?
All that said, it should be made obvious that this cultish obsession to de-platform everything that a person is part of or creates when they express disagreement with Transgender activism is neither helping Transgender human rights nor convincing anyone who is on the fence on such issues. Creating cult-like behavior to deny people’s Free Speech and Free Expression because they disagree on one very important human rights issue is doing nothing but spreading indifference and contempt. Blocking or cancelling anyone you disagree with so you can pretend not to see reality is just a form of narcissistic self-sabotage. I’d go so far as to say that even if she had anti-Trans content in fiction, that’s no reason to de-platform her because any society that respects Free Expression should allow anyone to write anything they want when it comes to fiction. If you disagree with people’s views, just don’t buy what they offer; cancel it with the power of your purse or learn to separate the author from the work. They should be free to express whatever views they want without the threat of cancellation, especially when the content they make has nothing to do with dehumanizing Trans people. Could my fellow Western Barbarians here in the US just stop being such complete dumbasses for at least one day or – as I suspect cancel culture and other behavior in our history have revealed – are we Western Barbarians fundamentally incapable of critical thinking?
53 thoughts on “The Dangerously Stupid Animus against JK Rowling”
shut the fuck up you immense cunt
What a very convincing argument. /sarcasm
Shut the fuck up saying “shut the fuck up”.
Gee, I wonder why TERFS exist and why a lot of women who were formally allies are becoming TERFS.
What a perfect example of what the author speaks of. You vile, unwell creature.
Supporting Transgender rights is being a TERF now? You do know what TERF means, right?
Brandon, you are a waste of space.
Policing people’s feelings toward a known enemy of the trans community is ‘supporting transgender rights’ now? Seriously?
When did I say we should police people’s feelings? People can feel however they wish; what I am saying is that Cancel Culture and demanding every aspect of a person’s career be shut down simply doesn’t work. Either ignore them through the power of the purse or take the risk of criticizing their odious views by citing falsifiable research and making good, logical argumentation against the content of their views. That would be far better than creating a safe bubble that almost immediately turns into an echo-chamber where any dissenting opinion is confused with being outright evil.
the thing is nobody even actually thinks that. you’re straw-manning dissidents to your own opinions and biases. and while doing that on its own is pretty bad-faithed, doing so under the guise of caring about a marginalized group. i don’t need her career “cancelled” because that does nothing, but you’re dismissing any criticisms saying you’re against “post-modernism” and “cancel culture” which are essentially a dog whistle for progressivism at this point. as someone who is trans and in trans social circles i have never heard a real person call for “ending her”, rather talking about how her influence as one of the best selling authors of all time (which you seem to conveniently neglect) can be dangerous as her rhetoric affirms the existing cultural bias and fear-mongering against trans individuals to a large audience of impressionable fans. in the comments you seem to be acting like this article contained a well-made logical argument without bias, yet you consistently patronize anyone that would disagree with you, which i would think to be antithetical to that kind of post positioned as both the intellectual and moral high ground.
How am I using Strawman against people disagreeing with me? What claims am I misrepresenting? You do know what bad faith and strawman are, don’t you? And as for patronizing? It’s hard to take comments that support physical violence against her with any degree of seriousness. That’s not an argument, those are threats to her life for the crime of having an opinion. And her views aren’t as odious as people make them out to be. I’ve pointed out her odious views several times and rebuked people who ignore her fearmongering of Trans Panic regarding bathrooms. Nevertheless, she doesn’t support dehumanization and my initial response was to an article supporting cancel culture in the mainstream media. That is hardly a non-issue or some small news organization suggesting dangerous anti-Free Speech measures. That’s a well-funded, mainstream, corporate media organization suggesting anti-Free Speech measures, so it deserves rebuke. And, regardless of all that, I’ve made it clear that I support the human rights of Trans folk; what I don’t and cannot support is violating other people’s human rights in that support as that is certainly not the way go. You may recall, we still live in a world where people are killed for Free Speech, even if they’re based in the United States: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/jamal-khashoggi-what-the-arab-world-needs-most-is-free-expression/2018/10/17/adfc8c44-d21d-11e8-8c22-fa2ef74bd6d6_story.html
Agree! Many people are just looking to be offended about this. Are there issues? Yes. Do those issues merit misogynistic and violent threats against her person? No. Do those issues merit complete screaming at her whenever she speaks? Again, no.
Thank you for the post. Wholeheartedly agree.
Thank you for this response. It’s nice to know that there are some reasonable people willing to listen. Cancel Culture seems to be causing a dangerous backlash and Transgender people seem to be suffering the brunt of it. We need more nuanced criticisms of these issues instead of censoring odious views. Cancel Culture is just ceding all the ground to the bigots. JK Rowling’s lack of recognition of a human rights issue doesn’t justify shutting down her Free Speech rights. People would be better served in repudiating her actions through either the power of their purse or by criticizing her anti-Trans views using statistical and scientific studies. As an example, her blog post on fear of women’s bathrooms stunk of the same bigotry related to gay panic back in 2004 in the US and studies have since debunked her odious views:
Of course, the results of these studies shouldn’t come as a surprise. Being Trans and using women’s bathrooms doesn’t make you more likely to hurt women, what matters is the personal ethics of the person. I often wonder why there’s always this “gay panic” and “trans panic” for public bathroom usage when this anti-Trans attitude certainly wouldn’t prevent any male pedophile from hurting young boys in male bathrooms. We need more critical arguments and far less cancel culture. At this point, Cancel Culture just seems to create an echo-chamber of self-sabotage.
All your arguments are wasted on them because they don’t hear anyone but themselves. The only way to stop this madness is denying them anything at all, just cut-off them completely from society as it always has been. They make no compromise, neither should we. They are mentally-ill and want everyone to come to their level. People who have nothing to do with their illnesses are being targeted to accommodate their feelings and having their lives turned upside down just so these people can keep shitting on their heads everyday with more insane demands and distasteful fetishes. They are proving this to you in the comments. We are all TERFs now, I’m a man and I support TERFs even if they don’t support me. TERFs are the most rational bunch of them, and that is a real stretch I’m making.
I would argue that it is symptomatic of the culture of postmodernism that they’ve been fed and doesn’t have anything to do with their mental wellbeing. Having trigger warnings, demanding everything become a Safe Space while ignoring other people’s Safe Spaces, and Canceling anyone who disagrees with them seems to – unsurprisingly – create a culture where people are just very bad at responding with rational arguments to debate these issues and they don’t seem to realize they’re ceding the debate floor to odious views entirely. It’s important to keep in mind that – at least in the US – it is a very real fact that Transgender killings happen, Transgender people are left homeless, and are attacked and violated due to dehumanization.
This has been going on for years, here’s the record from 2018 as an example:
Also, just as important, not all Trans people behave in this cultish manner.
Terfs all deserve to hang and she is the worst of them. Stop defending the bitch.
Your misogynistic rant is sure to convince people. /Sarcasm.
To hang? Oh my god. You’re deranged. You need to see a doctor.
And you wonder why Terfs exist when you act like this. No, JK Rowling, not this writer deserve to die for disagreeing with you
Trans rights are not up for debate, hate is not free speech. TERFS like Rowling, and anyone who defends them, should absolutely be deplatformed.
If you don’t debate in favor of Trans rights, you’re not supporting Trans rights. Legally, hate is Free Speech so long as it isn’t immediately calling people to commit violence such as during a rally. De-platforming anyone with a dissenting opinion is only going to breed further hostility and self-sabotage Trans rights activism.
Actually, “hate speech” IS free speech, and even if it wasn’t, nothing JK Rowling said was hateful. The only restrictions on free speech include incitement to violence, which JK didn’t even come close to doing. And as far as “trans rights” go, you have no fucking RIGHT to demand that OTHER PEOPLE’S perceptions of you match your perception of yourself. YOU are violating THEIR rights, not the other way around.
This is you in this very same article: “Terfs all deserve to hang and she is the worst of them. Stop defending the bitch.”
This is hate speech and you are literally advocating violence. By your own logic, you and your ilk need to be deplatformed and hanged. Stop defending the LGBT bitches.
State one thing said that was hateful please.
Imagine defending a TERF
Imagine the Free Speech of having a dissenting opinion to convince people activism is better served by disagreeing with odious ideas instead of clamoring to shut down anyone with odious ideas.
Shut the fuck up TERF.
Who or what are comments like “Shut the fuck up TERF” convincing?
Please. Please just make a vague attempt at understanding what free speech actually is.
Free speech is not freedom from criticism. Free speech does not mean everyone has to like you and be nice to you. It simply means the government can’t regulate your speech.
It’s a concept a child can understand, but you TERF defenders insist on either failing to grasp it or pretending you don’t understand it to bait your stupid followers into buying your nonsense argument.
That’s not quite correct. There’s the legal definition under US Law and then there’s the Philosophical position based on Enlightenment Values which is often meant to convey Freedom of Conscience. De-platforming may not usually be a Free Speech issue, but when you antagonize someone on every single platform that they have available to speak their mind on anything – any topic at all – with rabid demands that they not even be allowed to express their own work or their viewpoints anywhere at all then you are indeed violating their human rights to Free Speech and Free Expression. Demanding everything they write, speak, and create be de-platformed even when it has nothing to do with her anti-Trans position comes dangerously close to and often is violating her human rights to Free Speech and Free Expression. It’s also incredibly delusional and childish. If you choose to self-censor, use the power of your purse, and refuse to expend any money to her then that is perfectly fine. That is your right to Free Speech. But demanding the whole world de-platform everything an anti-Trans person does because you dislike them – even when their work has nothing to do with their anti-Trans views – is a violation of their human rights and their Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Expression.
I just wanted to say thanks for this sanity. Trans activists have gotten way out of hand are actually hurting a lot of people Jk Rowling does not deserve this treatment and if this makes me a TERF saying this, I am fine with that. I used to actually be an ally, but I am no more after seeing the violent way trans people act.
While I understand your sentiment, I would like to make it clear that I am indeed a staunch ally of the Trans community and I have a close friend who has went through many of the same issues I listed in my post regarding homelessness, threats of violence, dehumanization, and so forth. I doubt I’ll fully understand what they go through, but I can empathize and I try to listen to my friend when I can. These issues have only worsened since the pandemic as there are still high rates of Transgender serial killings and many State governments in the US have failed to disburse PUA benefits at all from March 2020 to now, Food Stamps are also being ignored. Fact is, it is safer to be a Trans person in countries like India and Pakistan than it is in the US. For one thing, both countries offer healthcare to Trans people unlike here in the US.
Notwithstanding, I think the problem is honestly that they’ve been fed this bullshit about trigger warnings, Safe Spaces, and have been given false info about the art critique of Postmodernism being useful for real life issues when all credible evidence seems to suggest the opposite. To be clear for any Trans folk or anyone on the fence reading this, Trans people likely do need community groups that act as Safe Spaces where they set their own rules to discuss Trans issues in private, but they can’t impose that on an entire college campus, or entire US States, or entire countries. That’s unfeasible and sure to lead to backlash. The problem is the postmodernism concepts they’ve been trying to impose on others and which has been promoted more so by their Progressive political allies than by Trans folk themselves. I put more blame on Progressive activists and Progressive Liberals who encouraged and supported this behavior as “right” and shut down any criticism of it as bigoted. They’re to blame far more than the Trans person who was fed this nonsense because it came from people who treated them with the compassion and respect they deserved. If the recent Capitol Hill insurrection didn’t open people’s eyes on the dangers of Postmodernism, nothing will. That was Conservative Postmodernism using conspiracy theories as a justification to destroy democracy in the US. I say that we need to dump postmodernism and focus on criticizing hateful and odious anti-Trans views. That’ll do more to promote the human rights of the Trans community.
I used to consider myself a staunch ally as well. Lately though i have just gotten disillusioned. I hate how a lot of trans women will make comments about how they are a bimbo now and it really bothers me that people like Jessica Yaviv almost ruined the businesses of a few beauticians because they refused to wax his male genitalia . I think girls should not have to worry about playing with boys during sports, because males have advantages and it is unfair to the girls trying to play. I also don’t think lesbians should be insulted for not wanting to date trans women, nor gay men insulted for not wanting to date trans men. I also hate how “Die in a Fire” “or die cis scum” help anything at all.
Heh, I was an ally for years. Then saw the abuse heaped on JKR and wrote a post something like this on my own private blog last year, since it freaked me out, both because I thought the abuse was counterproductive and because I cared about freedom of speech and freedom of belief (or unbelief). Then I researched as much as I could about what so-called TERFs were actually saying, the details of the laws they opposed etc, realised they were right and I’d been lied to. Now I’m cheerfully TERFing around. Luckily, it turns out that the women labelled ‘TERFs’ don’t actually want trans people to come to any harm. I suspect you’re in for a weird few months as you discover how much has been distorted, so figured I’d let you know that we’ve all been there…
Well, I generally try my best to view things with an open mind. Since you mentioned TERFs don’t support violence against the Trans community, do you have any links to share on what convinced you of your current position?
Ohhhh man, let’s see… This is going back almost a year; apologies if it’s a bit all-over-the-place, I’m writing a lot from memory so I really encourage you to read around as much as possible. If you just want the links I guess you can ctrl+f ‘http’ through this, but I’ve given the context; it was a collection of things and not down to any one link. This also has ended up MASSIVE but it’s still somehow the tip of the iceberg…
So before JKR’s essay came out, despite some of the wackier takes I’d seen across the internet, I thought ‘TERFs’ were misled, but not violent since I knew enough radfems to know that was silly; I thought they basically had a misunderstanding (or several) about what trans activism was about, and were acting out of fear based on scare-stories and dramatisations in the rightwing press. I thought in general, the trans movement resembled the views of the trans people I knew in person; I’ve since concluded it really doesn’t and a lot of trans people don’t realise how extreme and detached from reality the political activism has got. But at the time I thought the extreme stuff was just a few weird twitter or reddit accounts, and it wasn’t fair to assume they were representative.
I thought the activism was about making it easier to change documents that other people might see, to reduce the chance of abuse from people who noticed the docs didn’t match the trans person’s appearance (eg: driving licence. since found out they can already change that in the uk…). And I thought it was about removing some specific steps of the current process to ‘transition’ because those steps were deemed archaic by experts (turns out it was about removing absolutely any oversight whatsoever). (I also thought there was a much more robust evidence base for ‘trans healthcare’ than there seems to be, but tbh that’s almost a separate issue because ‘TERFs’ aren’t really trying to stop anyone doing things to their own bodies, even if there’s no evidence it helps, as long as they leave kids out of it.)
So, I had a close friend who had been a radfem for years; a few months prior to JKR’s essay we’d had an argument about trans activism; I thought she was arguing that it should be forbidden to *ever* allow trans women into women’s shelters, and I thought there were decent, vulnerable people who could have nowhere else to go who would be put in a bad situation with a rule like that enforced across the board, and it would sometimes be possible to make specific accommodations etc. So I thought she was putting ideology ahead of actual people. But in fact, I’ve concluded that the trans-activists are arguing that women should never be allowed to *refuse* someone entry based on being male, and moreover, that trans women should be able to *staff* the shelters without question, no matter whether that is traumatic for women who are triggered by proximity to males. (I first found out about this one by stumbling across the story of Kimberly Nixon and the Vancouver Rape Relief case)
She’d brought up trans women playing in women’s sports; at the time I was dismissive because I thought she’d bought into a scaremongering strawman, because nobody would seriously be proposing it, but NO. (Didn’t know any of the specific names at the time but have since learned of Hannah Mouncey, Rachel McKinnon, Laurel Hubbard at the Pacific Games; and then also at the school level, in the USA it can be the difference between getting a college scholarship and not so there is incentive to game it. I’d assumed awareness of this would be built into the system. As far as I can tell, it hasn’t been.).
She’d also mentioned that the stats brought out around the dangers to trans people were generally misleading and that in fact they were safer than the general population in the UK, and the stats that suggested they were in a lot of danger were in fact derived by including outlier stats involving trans people working in the sex trade in South America, where they face shocking violence because of their specific circumstances, not *because* they are trans, and nothing to do with random transphobic incidents, as the press paints it. Have since decided she’s right about this one, too; despite talk of an epidemic of transphobic murder, 0 trans people were killed in the UK in the last year and the average is 1 a year. Which is 1 too many but does not match the picture the activists paint, and is lower than the rate of women murdered. This violence also has absolutely nothing to do with feminist discussions, so it’s weird that the activists focus so much on female ‘TERFs’ and not at all on the men committing the violence. But I digress (I’m sorry there is just so MUCH distortion when you start looking into this)
She mentioned that detransitioners were treated like shit (I was surprised since I thought they were a tiny minority, have since discovered that we have no idea how many people detransition and activists do their best to bury their stories, and they are indeed treated shittily by the online trans community, which seems to try its best to get rid of their support spaces or repurpose those spaces into pushing gender-identity theory some more.).
My friend had more or less ended the conversation with ‘boundaries are important’ and at that point I thought, well, sure, but that there was no real danger and she was projecting a bit onto this issue because she’d experienced abuse. So I felt bad for her but I still thought she was wrong in her overall position.
Meanwhile, trans-activists were writing their usual ‘kill terfs’, ‘rape terfs’, etc, and I found it rather horrible that they were writing about one of my closest friends that way, when she’d said nothing of the sort about them. I understood why they would take academic arguments personally, but also, women have had basic rights etc debated for forever, in very offensive ways and with much worse abuse, and women don’t do this. So I didn’t think it was an excuse. I also didn’t like the appeals to emotion over evidence.
Simultaneously I’d read some of the feminist philosophy around things, and I’d had a similar sort of reaction to them as I had to her– that what they were saying was reasonable, but that they and the trans activists were talking past each other, because they had different ideas of what words meant, and so in the process the feminists were unintentionally strawmanning trans people’s views, and that was why trans people were upset.
I read various trans theorists, watched videos from trans people, etc, to try to get as good an understanding as I could of the details. They did seem a bit handwavey and everyone seemed to have a completely different definition of ‘gender identity’, when they defined it at all, but I figured there was *something* going on because nobody would put themselves through the difficulties they faced voluntarily. (I am rather more skeptical of these difficulties now, I suppose)
But at the time I saw it that, on some of their picture of the world, I would be agender/nonbinary since I had no ‘gender identity’, others would consider me ‘cis’ (since I didn’t want to modify my body in any way) and on the feminist picture of the world, I would just be an everyday person because they rejected ‘gender identity’ as a concept. The feminist picture seemed more sensible to me personally but I don’t like to tell other people what’s going on in their own heads, so if they had some sensation that they called ‘gender’, even if they couldn’t articulate it very well, whatever, they knew themselves best; I figured people could just have different pictures of the world like with any other coexisting belief systems (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA NO THE EXTREMISTS DO NOT PERMIT THIS). (I also didn’t realise that some people literally believed you could change sex or that you couldn’t tell anyone’s sex etc, but that’s a whole other kettle of fish anyway; it’s just relevant here because I thought JKR was strawmanning a bit to bring it up and have since seen that no, some people actually believe there are humans with ZZ and ZW chromosomes and stuff; it’s on a flat-earther level)
So this was all in the back of my mind, and I had also been unimpressed with Stonewall since their statements didn’t really add up (they would say they didn’t know how many trans people there were, and then they would say things like ‘50% of trans people etc etc etc’; and I thought, well, how can you know that half a population is x if you don’t even know how big that population is?)… and then JKR’s essay ( https://www.jkrowling.com/opinions/j-k-rowling-writes-about-her-reasons-for-speaking-out-on-sex-and-gender-issues/ ) came out. I thought she had some confused ideas about what activists were actually asking for, but her essay was reasonable and moving given her picture of the situation. I grew up with domestic violence so I understood where she was coming from. I cried reading it. She had a lot of empathy and I had a lot of empathy for her.
The internet, however…
Abuse from extremist twitter accounts, ok, those are weirdos on twitter, you can’t read much into it. But there was also some stuff I thought was really nasty from the mainstream press. (doesn’t help that I thought Pink News was actually a news website at this point; since learned they don’t factcheck a thing, it’s become apparent that they don’t have a clue what the details are of the legislation they’re promoting either, and I heard they put out 40 articles slamming JKR *that week*) GLAAD seemed to lack any sort of empathy. Mermaids wrote a weird statement (thought they were a legit charity, I now think they’re a child-abuse outfit, suggest reading through the judgement on the Keira Bell case for a quick summary of how little evidence there seems to actually be for the stuff they evangelise). The press all tried to depict her as malevolent, scheming, and it was so incredibly obvious that that wasn’t what was going on, I found it creepy as hell. Especially because in the same breath they were preaching about kindess and empathy and yet they were demonstrating that they seemed to have NO IDEA what those words meant. And it was like they were replying with catchphrases, not even reading her words, let alone replying to them. And encouraging everyone else *not* to read what she’d actually written.
I read a bunch of trans essays purporting to debunk Rowling (eg: Serano’s stuff), and none of them really engaged with the substance of what she was saying, they just danced around and threw ad-hominems at her. Meanwhile the people she retweeted etc made coherent arguments and could point to evidence. And she was talking about specific proposed changes to UK legislation, so I looked into them.
In the UK, cross-sex hormones and surgeries are covered on the NHS, and ‘gender reassignment’ is a protected category in law, meaning employers, housing etc cannot discriminate against someone for being trans. So what laws were the activists trying to change? I looked at the Woman’s Place UK website (I had been told this was a hate group; needless to say I don’t believe that any more) and Fair Play for Women (same again), which laid out the specific proposed changes to UK law.
There were 3 components:
* Make it possible to get a gender recognition certificate based solely on a self-declaration process; instead of the current ‘get a diagnosis of gender dysphoria from a qualified dr, live 2 years “in your acquired gender”, be evaluated by a panel of experts, to gain a gender-recognition certificate (grc)’, the law would be changed so that anyone could gain a grc just by filling in a form. Iirc there could be a 6 month jail sentence for anyone later found to be doing this in bad faith. This seemed wayyyyy too relaxed, not to mention totally impossible to prove bad faith. I was on board with getting rid of some steps (2 years ‘in the acquired gender’ seemed like nonsense; what did that even mean???) but having no professional oversight would mean literally anyone could get a GRC just by saying they wanted one– which was what Rowling was talking about. Meanwhile trans-activists who were attacking her were saying she was wrong to say just anyone could get one, but her whole point was about this proposed *change* to the law, NOT the law as it currently stood. So I was annoyed that they were misrepresenting that. And the presence of the GRC would be relevant because…
* Currently, in UK law, trans people can be in some single sex spaces for the other sex regardless of whether they have a grc, and some spaces ONLY if they have a grc, and then there are yet other spaces which may exclude trans people even with a grc if it is considered a proportionate means for achieving a legitimate aim. So when these different rules were devised, they were done so with the criteria for gaining a grc in mind, and so had previously been decided based on ‘where is it basically ok for anyone to be if they want (eg: maybe a women only knitting group or something like that), where should someone only be allowed if a panel of experts has conducted a psychological evaluation to filter out people likely to be dangerous (eg: maybe sharing a dormitory), and where is it never appropriate because it would harm someone else (eg: intimate examiners for rape victims)’. I found out Stonewall et al had previously lobbied for there to be NO scenarios where women could refuse a male on the grounds of being male, by trying to remove all exemptions. ( https://womansplaceuk.org/references-to-removal-of-single-sex-exemptions/ )
* Change the protected class of ‘gender reassignment’ to ‘gender identity’. Since absolutely nobody seemed to be able to agree on what ‘gender identity’ even meant, and there didn’t seem to be any academic consensus that it was even real, I was very wary of putting that into law. The UK already has ‘philosophical beliefs’ as a protected category, so it would be possible to protect one’s belief in one’s gender identity that way. So this didn’t seem to be about protecting a person from discrimination in the cases where they believed they had a certain gender identity; this was about forcing a consensus on *the existence of* gender identity. So trying to push ideology about ontology through via legislation, rather than through scientific study.
So I read around some more to see if any prominent trans writers were dealing with what struck me as obvious issues, and nope, they were too busy bullying women, handwaving, pretty much going ‘this never happens’, and claiming that anyone raising concerns was lying, claiming they were arguing in bad faith, claiming they seemed reasonable but were using eeeeevil dogwhistles etc etc etc. And they kept trying to make feminist concerns look ridiculous, while those women were trying to talk about serious things like rape crisis shelters and vulnerable women in prisons, so I thought it was really nasty of the trans-activists to treat it so dismissively. Meanwhile I found the r/gendercritical (since banned :/) archives and read through some of the ‘peak trans’ threads, where people often talked about their real issues dealing with bad actors who had called themselves ‘trans’ to pretty much do whatever they wanted. And I read a great piece by Jane Clare Jones explaining why this was NOTHING like the gay rights movement when you looked more closely, because of the completely different impact on *other people*. I read about the lesbian women who had been thrown to the ground at a supposed celebratory march ( https://archive.is/HHELw ), saw various film footage of transactivists screaming at feminists (and in one case punching a 60yr old woman), and it struck me that these people were completely radicalised (for whatever reason, this was the video where it really hit me; it’s not violent, just incredibly creepy imo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Wc6-HikFz4 ). I found out about how they’d been basically terrorising women who spoke up, and how the extremist stuff wasn’t an edge of the movement, it was the core of the movement.
(And at some point I also discovered a fact checker which compared laws across countries and revealed that the UK actually had some of the least restrictive laws around changing legal docs etc in the world, contrary to the news stories. Aaaand that, where presenters talked about self-id being fine in other countries, they weren’t actually comparing like for like because of other legal differences. And at this point I was really losing patience because it was like every single claim they made was a lie, the stats were all bogus, and so on)
And I went and read the Maya Forstater judgement and decided it was ridiculous, she ought to have won and that the various activists were completely lying about what had happened. (judgement here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5e15e7f8e5274a06b555b8b0/Maya_Forstater__vs_CGD_Europe__Centre_for_Global_Development_and_Masood_Ahmed_-_Judgment.pdf )
And THEN I discovered the stuff about ‘trans kids’ and Susie Green (CEO of Mermaids) taking her kid to Thailand for ‘sex-reassignment surgery’ aged 16, watched her TED talk, concluded this was blatant child abuse, saw how she’d initially tried to silence a critic by threatening to sue, and that was around the time I noped the fuck out of the trans movement for good.
So, first, my apologies on how slow this was to show up. I had thought the comment indicator on my dashboard was just informing me of the same stuff on my notification list, but that was not so. I didn’t know you had commented this until much later than I should have. My settings for comments are set so that anyone can comment freely, but for some reason large volumes of text still get required for approval despite the fact I had specifically placed my settings so anyone can comment without being required any form of approval. I don’t know why WordPress has this issue, but it often happens with comments that are large in volume. Also, I just finished reading Max Dashu’s account of what happened at the pride march; that was deeply troubling to read and – while the credibility of the media spiraling downward is no surprise due to other areas of information where they’ve lied – it is really insane to learn how these cultish practices have not only resulted in violence between the LGBT but advocated for it along with slanderous, misogynistic lies too. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that the Trans community is responsible as the attackers are also cited to be queer and Lesbian women like them who are from a younger age bracket. I’d place more blame on the ideologies behind their actions that I’ve mentioned already.
Now, I can’t comment on the UK as I haven’t checked the statistics there, but it is most certainly the case that Trans folk are getting killed in the US. I had first heard of Trans serial killings in 2016 from a friend posting about it on Facebook shortly after the 2016 elections, from what I recall. After that I looked into it more and there does indeed seem to be a continuous pattern of Serial Trans killings by hateful Anti-Trans people. Here’s research done of such instances in 2018:
And more recently last year with the spike in serial Trans killings during the pandemic in the US:
And during this period, the Trump administration got rid of the healthcare rights of Trans folk:
So they are real issues here in the US. In fact, India and Pakistan gave more healthcare rights and were giving more legal protections to Transgender people than the US up until a US Supreme Court case this past year that ended job discrimination for all LGBT people more generally:
The US Supreme Court decision last year which was a long overdue correction:
If you’re having difficulty understanding Transgenderism from a scientific and factual point of view, which is fair since there’s unfortunately so much misinformation and a shut down of any degree of questioning regarding these issues and you mentioned that’s all you found when you tried to research it, then I’d recommend Debra Soh – a former Sex Researcher turned journalist and author – who helped explain the scientific evidence without the political baggage.
She’s wrongfully labeled a bigot by the current political climate of postmodernism, but if you read her material or watch her interviews, then you’ll likely find the opposite:
I had to login and make a free account to fully read it and I’m unsure if that requirement is still there, but I found this article very helpful in putting it into perspective. Essentially, Trans-men (women transitioning to men) and Trans-women (men transitioning to women) certainly do exist from what scientific data shows, but ideas of being non-binary, agender, and so on may be more of a social identification and not based on scientific evidence. What, for instance, would be the difference between a non-binary and a bisexual? The confusion may stem from a mix of nonsensical Postmodernist thought and a Trans person’s own confusion on say, being a Trans-man and being attracted to men or being a Trans-woman and being attracted to women. There’s fluidity there, but coming up with all these gender fluid terms may not be helpful and if they are helpful, should be understood as a form of social identification and not scientific evidence until the evidence shows otherwise. Debra Soh has been the earliest to criticize young children transitioning and suggests waiting until they’re of legal age at 18 so they can make their own life decisions without parental and societal imposition on children. She wrote a book on the subject which I bought but I’ve yet to read, but you may be interested in checking out since you seem curious on the differences in the scientific studies vs the social influence of these ideas on Transgenderism:
If you still need convincing, I recommend her interview by Dave Rubin on his Rubin Report. The Rubin Report is usually nonsensical garbage since Rubin never fact-checks or takes his interviewees to task, but that is dependent on who is doing most of the talking. When you have a qualified Sex Researcher speaking on Trans issues, the interview ends-up being quite stellar. So I recommend this interview, but I’d be very wary of his other material:
I hope this has been useful for you.
No problem on taking a while to approve, it was a very long comment!
Yeah, that pride march story is awful, I’d forgotten how bad it was and just reread…
Agreed on ‘social’ gender terms; while I think these can be useful when people want to express experiences to each other, they’re not backed by data. I think last I checked, the gender wiki had some 100+ genders listed, many of which were coined on tumblr. I think there’s a real issue when respectable institutions are quoting this as though it’s science.
So, I’ve read around quite a lot on the science side over the years and I’m happy to admit that some people experience gender dysphoria; I don’t believe that all these people are describing the *same* experience, with the same causes, and I’ve also found in my reading that the experiments most commonly cited didn’t control for sexual orientation of the participants, so things that are being labelled as trans-specific may actually correlate to orientation. And I don’t think it is being adequately researched at the moment, since I think people are too ideologically invested in a preferred outcome and can’t look objectively at the evidence. (re: books, if you can get past the cover/title which *looks* like it’s going to be a fearmongering tirade, “Irreversible Damage” is actually very thoroughly researched once it gets into the science imo. That’s focused specifically on female teens, so it’s a more narrow focus, but I think it’s interesting because a lot of the older research only looks at adult males, because until recently most people diagnosed with gender dysphoria were adult males, and these populations are different in a lot of ways, needless to say.). I also have issues with the fundamental logic of person A claiming they have the same experiences as person B, when no person can know another person’s experience, and when person B is denying any similarity between their own experience and the experience person A describes. But this aspect of things is something that I don’t think actually affects the practicalities that much (it just bothers me because I don’t think it’s rational…).
Anyway, the main thing for me is that trans people’s internal experience is completely orthogonal to the political issues feminists are raising, because society bases systems around/ collects statistics on *bodies*, since that’s what’s observable from the outside. When we look at crime stats, etc, we don’t collect them by identity, and where we have studied it, haven’t found that trans women commit less violent crime than males who consider themselves to be men. We don’t find that females are targeted (or not targeted) depending on their *identity*. But we do find various behaviours and experiences correlate with whether one has a male or female body. And then same for medical conditions, sporting abilities, and so on. So inner identity is not relevant to systems that are designed to protect people based on probabilities across groups, and it doesn’t make sense to replace systems which *are* based on statistical probabilities with systems that aren’t, or to muddle the data by recording data about bodies for some people and inner experience for others. I personally haven’t found accounts of inner experience consistent enough to be convincing, but it doesn’t really matter either way. To me, it’s like saying we will put people in one prison or another based on whether they’re an atheist. It just isn’t relevant. What’s relevant is who is targeted by whom in crimes like sexual assaults, who is physically stronger, who can get pregnant (or get someone else pregnant), etc. And there are huge statistical differences between males and females. So if someone wants to argue that trans women have statistically identical needs and behaviours to females and should be included in protective systems tailored to the specific needs of females, they need to present the evidence, and right now they don’t have this evidence, and they *do* have contradictory evidence.
I support measures for making trans people in the USA safer, I don’t think abolishing single-sex spaces is the answer (and opening a single sex space up to both sexes stops it from being a single sex space by definition), and I wish trans-activists would spend their energy making eg: safer spaces specific for trans women, or improving general safety in male spaces, maybe even lobbying for gun control, etc. The activist movement has a lot of money and lobbying power and I believe they could achieve this if they chose to, but for whatever reason they want to wage an (unwinnable) ideological war over whether trans women truly are considered women, and persecute women who disagree with them. As far as the activism goes, I should note that I distinguish individual trans people from the trans political movement, which I think is the same thing as the queer political movement at the moment. There is a schism between this and the older lesbian/gay/bisexual movements. And I know that there are trans people who are speaking out against the current movement (eg: Scott Newgent and Buck Angel where kids are concerned, Debbie Hayton and Fionne Orlander where women’s rights are concerned) So if I gave the impression that I think all trans people are violent or something like that, no! My issue is that the current political movement is a total mess and is indulging people who *are* entitled and violent, and hurting a lot of innocent people in the process. And so I don’t think the trans political movement makes sense to achieve its stated aims, because I think all it is doing is causing enormous bad feeling toward trans people, and I don’t see how that’s going to make anyone any safer. If it somehow wins, we get the most violent activists calling the shots, and you’ve seen how much they *actually* hate ‘TERFs’… If it loses, which I think is more likely, there’s a danger they’ll have caused so much bad feeling across so many parts of society there will be a violent backlash. None of this is good for anybody. It’s a terrible strategy.
From what I’ve read, I believe a lot of what is called ‘trans healthcare’ doesn’t have proven benefits in the longterm and is doing more harm than good, but honestly this is something for trans people to sort out among themselves, I’m past caring as long as kids are left alone and people stop trying to remove women’s protections in law. Most TERFs are generally of the view that cross-sex hormones and plastic surgery are not a good idea and won’t help, but we’re not going to try to make it illegal. We think people need better information about what they’re signing up for, because a lot of people seem to be ignorant about the realities and get surprised (eg: testosterone increasing heart attack risk fourfold in women, the need to have a hysterectomy after a few years because of increased cancer risk, what sex-reassignment surgery actually entails and what the results look like). There’s a very glossy marketing campaign and it smooths over things like how traumatic surgery can actually be. So what we want is for people considering these procedures to be better informed, because from the detransition stories we’ve heard, we’re convinced that people are *not* adequately informed currently. And we want there to be better research because things like therapeutic approaches have changed dramatically in the last 5 years, and it seems to be based more on fashion than evidence, moving from a model where people would have a lot of tailored attention and exploration of their motivations, to a model where people sell them cross-sex hormones asap and they’re encouraged to blame ‘TERFs’ for any lingering unhappiness. I think the tendency to put ideology first means that people aren’t always questioning cause and effect. They see something that affects trans people, and they assume it affects them *because* they are trans, rather than that they might be experiencing gender dysphoria *because* of this shared experience.
The reason I focus on the UK is because that’s where JKR is based, and those are the laws she was writing about. A lot of the hatred aimed toward her ignores that. I understand that USA legislation is different and various protections that are present in the UK are still missing; I think some of the confusion stems from people assuming that the UK is exactly the same. But even then, there’s often a gap between what the activists are demanding and what would actually protect trans people in the USA, or the specific legislation requested may have unintended effects when other legislation would work just as well without causing problems for anyone else.
Well that’s long again! Nice to have a normal conversation amidst all the shouting.
There’s pretty good psychological research to support that people have similar experiences on any particular subject and humans tend to project this “uniqueness” factor that emphasizes greater differences than there actually are between any human being. It was from Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert. I was pretty surprised to learn to what extent people essentially overthink differences among each other. Also, I should probably note, gender dysphoria is something people in the LGBT community generally go through so Lesbian and Gay people experience it as well, but it doesn’t mean they’re necessarily Trans and Debra Soh did mention it’s dangerous to push this on children who are just coming to terms and it would be safer to let them make decisions as adults. You did mention how ideology seems to be trumping the science and that does bode a dangerous problem though. I’d blame the postmodernist culture for that as it puts this idea of ‘the good “Us” vs The Evil “Them”‘ above the factual evidence which seems to be leading to many of the problems you mentioned. Also, when I mentioned the healthcare, I meant the healthcare protections in the US were removed entirely, not just for particular surgeries. In the US, while there are plenty of Trans-helpline groups, they don’t really do much beyond trying to help talk to and calm a Transgender person down if they’ve experienced violence or any other form of abuse; when I contacted and shared several with one Trans friend, she mentioned that’s all they offered and a lot of the supposed help to Trans people is likewise more a nice image than meaningful social benefits.
And agreed, it is nice to have a normal, civil conversation amidst the shocking amount of shouting matches these issues too often create.
See this is what bothers me too. I honestly, thought JKR brought up some good points in her essay. And if people thought she was wrong, they should have addressed WHY…instead of acting like she is the most evil person that ever eviled.
this honestly describes the exact same thing that happened to me. I was a super trans activist and would constantly talk about those crazy, evil terfs until I started hate reading their blogs and soon realized that they were 1000000% right and reasonable.
I’ve read Rowling’s essay, and I think it’s clear that she doesn’t think trans people should be made homeless, subject to violence or dehumanization, or denied healthcare.
It seems like she thinks that people who don’t transition are not the same group as people who do, and that women shouldn’t be prevented from talking about the experience of being female. I wonder what it is that Rowling says that you think is beyond the pale?
I think it was Miranda Yardley, who describes herself as a transsexual, who I first saw saying the stuff about women not being a feeling.
She also espoused Trans Panic, no different from Gay Panic over bathrooms. That was a form of dehumanization. She’s also too flippant about the Trans surgical process with arguments about how anyone who identifies as Trans will be allowed in bathrooms when the process to transition is lengthier and long-term.
1. Has she ever donated any of her money to Anti-Trans Causes?
Well I don’t know I don’t know her personal finances. Wouldn’t surprise me. She certainly aided anti-trans actors. https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/gop-senator-quotes-j-k-rowling-while-blocking-vote-lgbtq-n1231569
2. Does anything in the content of the Harry Potter series indicate malevolence towards Transgender people?
Argueably Rita Skeeter. And for sure in her other works.
3 If someone harbors odious Anti-Trans views, does that justify removing or demanding the cancellation of everything that they’ve ever worked on or every topic they want to speak about, even when the content has absolutely nothing to do with disparaging Trans rights?
Yes. Just as in case of racism, antisemitism or mysogyny.
4. Does maligning, harassing, or canceling anyone who makes it clear that they have disagreeable or odious views against Trans people actually help Trans activism? Does it make the world safer for Transgender people who are thrown out of their homes, hunted down and murdered, or otherwise discriminated against? Does it do anything to decrease Transgender killings?
Yes. Silencing anit-trans voices helps trans rights.
5. Does widening this delusional “post-modernism” bubble until everyone submits to it actually prevent the dehumanization of Transgender people or would listening to and then criticizing odious views be more effective in the service of Trans rights activism?
That’s just some incoherent nonsense. Yes fighting anti-trans propaganda helps trans people.
Note to Stupid People: No, this is not some anti-Trans wankfest. I fully support Trans rights and the human rights of all the LGBT. This is in defense of everyone’s right to Free Speech and Free Expression.
No, you don’t support us. You do exactly the opposite.
1. People quoting her is not her giving money to anti-Trans causes. Bigots like Trump attempt to quote Gandhi during presidential races, is that Gandhi’s fault?
2. Rita Skeeter is an antagonist who disparages Hermione with sexist views through her journalism. Having a bigoted antagonist who is outsmarted by the victim by the end of Book 4 is not the same as advocating for Skeeter’s positions in the narrative.
3. People don’t get removed in those cases either. Some Palestinian protest groups have anti-Semitic views, some Politicians who’ve made disgustingly misogynistic comments or even published their private parts to female interns still have a career. JK Rowling has only ever made negative comments, she has not supported any sort of violence against the Trans community as many of these other groups have used their Free Speech to hurl abuse and violence on Jews, women, and so forth.
4. You have provided no causal link between silencing voices and decreasing rates of suicide. The data you shared shows that it’s intimate family and partner dehumanization that’s the cause of suicide, not what some celebrity is saying.
5. Shutting down and Canceling anything without challenging their views is ceding defeat to those bigoted views. It isn’t helping the Trans community fight back against anything.
Answering the points:
1 – No. But most (to not say all) racists and mysoginists I know haven’t donated to anti-black or women causes too. Is this a real criteria?
2 – There aren’t trans people in Harry Potter as far as I remember, so there isn’t any negative representations nor positive. However, there are negative representations of jews and the movies were blatantly racist in some points. Should we start talking about her being antissemitic or racist?
3 – Yes. In the same way that I would never spend money on art made by nazis even if the art has nothing problematic. Recently, Jon Schaffer from Iced Earth was arrested due to the Capitol invasion and he and his bands lost many contracts. Do you think it’s unfair specifically for him (don’t take into account the other members who suffered the consequences even though they had nothing to do with it)?
4 – (I’ll answer here both point 4 and the last part of 3, as it’s the same idea) When you let someone relevant saying “trans people should die” in public with no reaction whatsoever, you are saying to people around you that this kind of behavior is tolerable. Even if the person is not relevant because of it, you are still sending a mensage about what can you say without suffering consequences.
Stopping them don’t make trans people’s live better by itself in any way. However, letting them talk their way does have the potential to make trans people’s lives worse as there’s a tendency more people become vocal about it. Using a real life example, the reaction to JK generated a chain reaction that resulted in TERFs forums being banned from Reddit and many of them also being banned from Twitter. For me, this is a net gain for trans people.
5 – Listening and talking is a better solution, but it’s only useful as long as the other side is willing to listen. I’ve seen many people responding with well structured arguments against JK, even noticing that in one of her texts she’s also shown some prejudice against autistic people. Some actors from Harry Potter responded in the same way, but she refused to listen. Cancelation should be a last resort, but a last resort is also a resort to be used.
1. Obviously, yes. There are gradations to even bigotry. Having odious views, but not donating to odious causes makes a real difference.
2. This is a bold claim and I’d like to see evidence. I’ve never noticed any anti-semitism in Harry Potter.
3. Nazis and Schaffer committed violence. Non-violent protest, even for dehumanizing views like what JK Rowling is doing, is not the same as advocating violence for political goals.
4. To my knowledge, JK Rowling has not said Trans people should die, so it is not the same. She has bigoted views against the Trans community, but that is not the same as advocating violence and death in your specific scenario. Furthermore, Reddit and Twitter banning them means absolutely nothing. They can go on another forum, they can make their own forums, and only 10 percent of the people on Twitter are responsible for over 80 percent of the Tweets. It’s very much a false-consensus effect: https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/2019/04/24/sizing-up-twitter-users/pdl_04-24-19_twitter_users-00-06/ and for more detailed info on this: https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/2019/04/24/sizing-up-twitter-users/
5. Cancelation shouldn’t be the resort. Shutting down her human rights to Free Speech and Free Expression because she doesn’t agree with the human rights of others is only going to result in backlash. Choose instead to self-censor and encourage others to self-censor. Cancel culture is forcing views on others, self-censorship is expressing your own rights of Free Speech and Free Expression. There’s a big difference.
You lost me at “J K Rowling has anti trans views” as it indicates you’ve done zero research into what she’s actually said and why. Only a TRA zealot could read her essay and come away with anti trans. So either you didn’t bother looking into the subject or you’re just as brainwashed and deluded as most of the other commentators. JKR supports women and the biological reality of sex. She’s not anti trans, she’s anti extremist gender ideology.
Acknowledging the biological reality of sex doesn’t change the biological reality of Trans people, who account for less than one percent of the US population and probably much lower or just as low in other countries. It doesn’t change her support for Trans panic in public bathrooms, no different from gay panic in public bathrooms in the early 2000s. The trans panic over bathrooms has been debunked by studies btw: https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/no-link-between-trans-inclusive-policies-bathroom-safety-study-finds-n911106 thus, JK Rowling was wrong based on the facts.
Fact: The majority of child sexual abuse is committed by straight cis white christian men. Trans people are less likely to rape kids than atheists who are more moral than religicucks.
That’s what most research into the subject has found. The more religious the men, the younger the targets.