Author J.K. Rowling has published a 3,600-word essay trying to explain her views on gender identity amid backlash over statements she made on social media earlier this month. Her comments have drawn criticism and have been characterised as transphobic, with many Hollywood stars, including Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe, having criticised her views.
Rowling became the target of ire again for a Tweet mocking a headline about “people who menstruate”.
“'People who menstruate.' I'm sure there used to be a word for those people,” Rowling tweeted on Sunday. “Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”
Now, she has published an essay and she does not walk back her views. In fact, she gets into controversial topics such as transgender bathroom laws, as the ‘CNN’ reports.
“I want trans women to be safe. At the same time, I do not want to make natal girls and women less safe,” she says at one point, acknowledging elsewhere, “I believe the majority of trans-identified people not only pose zero threat to others, but are vulnerable for all the reasons I've outlined.”
In her essay, Rowling also discloses that she a domestic abuse and sexual assault survivor.
“I'm mentioning these things now not in an attempt to garner sympathy, but out of solidarity with the huge numbers of women who have histories like mine, who've been slurred as bigots for having concerns around single-sex spaces,” she wrote.
She adds: “The last thing I want to say is this. I haven't written this essay in the hope that anybody will get out a violin for me, not even a teeny-weeny one....I've only mentioned my past because, like every other human being on this planet, I have a complex backstory, which shapes my fears, my interests and my opinions. I never forget that inner complexity when I'm creating a fictional character and I certainly never forget it when it comes to trans people.”
She concludes her essay by stating: “All I'm asking -- all I want -- is for similar empathy, similar understanding, to be extended to the many millions of women whose sole crime is wanting their concerns to be heard without receiving threats and abuse.”
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