J.K. Rowling Is Transphobic. Her Legacy Is Now Filled With Bigotry.
J.K. Rowling was once known for her creation of the fantastical wizarding world of Harry Potter, but recently she’s been making headlines because of her transphobic views — and it seems like bigotry is the legacy she is invested in leaving behind.
J.K. Rowling’s obsession with trans people became obvious in June, when she posted a long explanation for why, as many queer and trans activists had been flagging up, she had been liking transphobic content on Twitter. Her justification for engaging with a tweet that referred to trans women as “men in dresses” was that she was doing research for her upcoming novel. Rowling also included many transphobic views in her 3,000-word post, expressing concern over the “misogyny” of trans activists silencing cis women who do not accept that trans women are women. Drawing on her experience of being a domestic abuse survivor, Rowling wrote: “I believe my government is playing fast and loose with womens and girls’ safety,” and that she “refuses to bow down to a movement that I believe is doing demonstrable harm in seeking to erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class and offering cover to predators like few before it.”
Months later, the real reasons behind Rowling’s research have come to light: In her latest novel, Troubled Blood, she has made the villain a murderous man in a dress. A review of the novel published by the Daily Telegraph on Sunday mused: “One wonders what critics of Rowling’s stance on trans issues will make of a book whose moral seems to be: never trust a man in a dress.” An excerpt of the book revealed that the murderer Rowling created didn’t simply wear a dress to conceal his identity, he wears a burqa. Despite spending several sentences of her June statement insisting that she wants all trans people — particularly trans women of color — to be safe, Rowling has not hesitated in writing a boogeyman character that will further entrench transphobia and racism in society.
The “man in a dress” trope has fueled discrimination against trans and queer people for generations, ossifying the idea that trans women aren’t women, but male predators seeking to attack “real” women in women-only spaces. Contemporarily, this idea is constantly…