The decade's most triggering comedy
Last week, The Daily Wire reported that author J.K. Rowling was smeared as a “transphobe” and threatened with being “canceled” because she spoke out in support of researcher Maya Forstater, who was fired from her job with the Centre for Global Development for saying that while transgender individuals can change their outward appearance, male-to-female transgenders remain male and can never be, biologically, “women.”
“What I am so surprised at is that smart people who I admire, who are absolutely pro-science in other areas, and champion human rights & womens rights are tying themselves in knots to avoid saying the truth that men cannot change into women (because that might hurt mens feelings),” Forstater said, originally.
“Dress however you please,” the “Harry Potter” author replied on social media. “Call yourself whatever you like. Sleep with any consenting adult who’ll have you. Live your best life in peace and security. But force women out of their jobs for stating that sex is real? #IStandWithMaya #ThisIsNotADrill”
Forstater’s case is particularly egregious. Not only was she terminated from her position for articulating scientific facts, but when she brought a case against her former employer to a tribunal in the U.K., which found not just that CGD was justified in firing Forstater, but that Forstater’s basic beliefs — that men can never become biological women — was harmful, even if Forstater was simply saying what she believed.
“Paying due regard to the qualified right to freedom of expression, people cannot expect to be protected if their core belief involves violating others’ dignity,” the court said. Forstater’s “absolutist” views on the subject of gender were actually violent, the court found, and her opinion “violates their dignity and/or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.”
Rowling met with a torrent of abuse for her statement, with LGBTQ+ activists and their allies across the spectrum, threatening Rowling’s livelihood, and demanding that she apologize and admit that she was in error when she spoke out in support of someone who merely acknowledges biological and genetic reality.
GLAAD has been among Rowling’s most vocal critics, often saying on social media that Rowling is putting transgender individuals “at risk” because she refuses to believe men can be considered women for the purposes of things like privacy and sport. On Friday, the pro-LGBTQ rights group put out a statement blasting Rowling and challenging her to meet with transgender activists and cherry-picked scientists in order to expand her worldview.
In other words, Rowling should submit to indoctrination and bullying until she agrees that male-to-female transgender individuals are, indeed, women.
“J.K. Rowling, whose books gave kids hope that they could work together to create a better world, has now aligned herself with an anti-science ideology that denies the basic humanity of people who are transgender,” the group’s “head of talent” said in a statement, according to Variety. “Trans men, trans women and non-binary people are not a threat, and to imply otherwise puts trans people at risk. Now is the time for allies who know and support trans people to speak up and support their fundamental right to be treated equally and fairly.”
Rowling, of course, never said trans men, trans women, or non-binary people are a “threat.” She merely spoke out in support of those who acknowledge biology and genetics, suggesting that they shouldn’t be punished for their lack of wokeness.
In a move that must have been shocking to GLAAD, Rowling herself ignored them. Her representatives declined GLAAD’s offer of re-education.
LGBTQ advocacy group @glaad says they reached out to @jk_rowling's PR team and offered to facilitate an off-the-record discussion between the best-selling author and members of the trans community. Rowling’s reps declined. More here: https://t.co/77D6sR8Ldm
— Adam B. Vary (@adambvary) December 19, 2019
If Rowling continues to stand firm against the wokescolds, she may strike a significant blow for freedom of speech. Although ordinary researchers, writers, and comedians can often be forced to apologize for their wrong opinions — Star Wars’ Mark Hamill, for example, apologized for merely liking Rowling’s tweet — Rowling’s net worth is well into the billions. People are unlikely to stop consuming Harry Potter books and merchandise simply because some on social media, who once lauded Rowling as a heroine of the “Resistance,” are now left disappointed and ignored.
But once the pressure has little effect on one person, it may lose its tooth altogether.