Dear J.K. Rowling You Are A Villain

Shana Carroll
Jun 11, 2020 · 21 min read
Photo by Mercedes Mehling on Unsplash

Today Ms. Rowling posted her response to accusations of being a “TERF.” Amidst her writing she did indeed affirm she is a TERF, and continued to use her platform to degrade, attack, and attempt to silence transgender people from advocating for equality and respect. Before she even got to her “argument” she wrote of the

accusations of TERFery have been sufficient to intimidate many people, institutions and organisations I once admired, who’re cowering before the tactics of the playground. ‘They’ll call us transphobic!’ ‘They’ll say I hate trans people!’ What next, they’ll say you’ve got fleas?

This quote has been applauded as she and others have branded trans women “misogynistic” or being prejudiced against women. Now, that trans women have a social community, women like Rowling, instead of learning, continue to tell us we are “biologically male” and prejudiced against feminism. The funny part is she continues to tell us she is a “biological woman” but Ms. Rowling you haven’t disclosed your genitals, seen a gender specialist, nor released your bloodwork or chromosomes, how do we know you are a biological woman? If trans women have to prove we are women, how can we trust you, what women-hood have you proven? Before she even begins her argument she already seeks to create this space that she is to be believed simply because she is one famous, and two a biological woman. Whatever those mean going forward underline she is speaking truth to readers. Her money and her power and her identity are all that make her worthy of trust and respect.

So what does she actually argue and why is it flawed? She gives us five reasons she is speaking out, and uses some highly questionable ways to argue it.

Reason #1

Firstly, I have a charitable trust that focuses on alleviating social deprivation in Scotland, with a particular emphasis on women and children. Among other things, my trust supports projects for female prisoners and for survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. I also fund medical research into MS, a disease that behaves very differently in men and women. It’s been clear to me for a while that the new trans activism is having (or is likely to have, if all its demands are met) a significant impact on many of the causes I support, because it’s pushing to erode the legal definition of sex and replace it with gender.

Rowling argues that she runs a charitable trust that works to support women and children, and also funds medical research into MS. She believes transgender people have full rights and equality will negatively impact her fundraising, and her money stream. She accordingly would argue then that trans women do not deserve the same rights as other women in prison, that trans women and children are not worth of her time or money either. Why because she doesn’t under that both sex and gender are a spectrum. Due to that transgender women deserve to be put in solitary confinement, and raped and killed in men’s prisons. Why? Because she already has us labelled as violent threats that need to be stomped out.

According to her, transgender people holding her accountable for supporting questionable, and damnable actions is hurting her money and finances, and to be a better philanthropist she is going to make sure trans people get no money. That sounds pretty damn disgusting, and if not TERFery as she uses, it’s ignorant and malicious. Trans women face a higher rate of suicide and trans children face extreme religious and family distress that can also lead to suicide. Her making sure she doesn’t support trans women and children means that she has a very narrow view of care and a very small amount of compassion. She will not make life better for women and children, because as she will continue to argue trans women and children deserve nothing but hate, disrespect and inequality because we speak out too much, and challenge her white savior complex.

Stating that advocating for trans acceptance and rights as a threat to women and children is a straw man argument because trans women and trans children are two of the most at risk demographics in the world of rights, and lack access to equality and protections. Most importantly, trans women and trans children do not deserve to be othered by a celebrity that has no clue what sex and gender even mean.

Further as a trans woman we know ad nauseam how much sex and gender are both a spectrum. Rowling begins her argument showing she doesn’t even grasp a basic understanding of biology but because of her biology and celebrity status we must believe her as she cries wolf. Before Rowling continue to taut her biology while demeaning my sex she should consider this important research graphic published in Scientific American with the link below:

This graphic alone points out there are six phases of sex determination of a fetus, and nowhere in the process does “male” or “female” trigger the next phase to be “male” or “female.” Further Liz Brusman a Molecular Biologist not a Fantasy Fiction novelist writes:

Students are often inaccurately taught that all babies inherit either XX or XY sex chromosomes, and that having XX chromosomes makes you female, while XY makes you male. In reality, people can have XXY, XYY, X, XXX, or other combinationsof chromosomes — all of which can result in a variety of sex characteristics. It’s also true that some people with XX chromosomes develop typically male reproductive systems, and some people with XY chromosomes develop typically female reproductive systems. … Just like gender isn’t binary, our biology isn’t binary either: it, too, exists on a spectrum. In fact, many people’s bodies possess a combination of physical characteristics typically thought of as “male” or “female.” As one example, some people with androgen insensitivity have XY chromosomes, internal testes, and external female genitalia. Traits, including hormone levels, can also vary widely both within and across sexes. But people who fall outside of what’s considered normal face discrimination.

Note, the Molecular Biologist, not the fiction writer, states education is lacking, sex is not simply what chromosomes one has, and this system has resulted in horrible sex surgeries performed on infants and trans people because of the lack of education. So from the very get go, Rowling arguing on the basis she is a biological female is meaningless, and her posturing that changing the legal definition of sex would not help women and children because of trans people is false. Here entire arugment is framed that as a natal woman she has certain rights that natal trans women shouldn’t have. To her, the status of her birth makes her a better woman, and as a celebrity she is the uber woman and therefore above reproach and above being a simple TERF. She is simply irreproachable and worried about her pearls as the trans person walks near her.

Reason #2

The second reason is that I’m an ex-teacher and the founder of a children’s charity, which gives me an interest in both education and safeguarding. Like many others, I have deep concerns about the effect the trans rights movement is having on both.

This reason again sounds good to be involved, but as an educator, and someone that works for a better life for children she is actively dismissing credible research that could educate herself and others, so I don’t really know why this is an important reason she has come out as a TERF? She was a teacher but now stands against education and helping certain kids that she vehemently hates because they aren’t her kind of child.

Reason #3

The third is that, as a much-banned author, I’m interested in freedom of speech and have publicly defended it, even unto Donald Trump.

Yeah, Harry Potter isn’t a banned book other than in some one off private schools, so that’s kind of a reach Rowling, and yikes, you want to just say whatever you want like Donald Trump, a person she was engaging in Twitter wars with a few years ago? So reason it’s included — she wants to say whatever she feels and not be held accountable for it like Trump, okay. Further, we learn because she has the freedom of speech she doesn’t have to tell us the truth, nor is she accountable to truth because she can say whatever she wants.

Reason #4

The fourth is where things start to get truly personal. I’m concerned about the huge explosion in young women wishing to transition and also about the increasing numbers who seem to be detransitioning (returning to their original sex), because they regret taking steps that have, in some cases, altered their bodies irrevocably, and taken away their fertility. Some say they decided to transition after realising they were same-sex attracted, and that transitioning was partly driven by homophobia, either in society or in their families.

So she states her point here is that she thinks there is a huge explosion in trans boys coming out, and yet there is also a huge boom in detransition, she also links people coming out because of homophobia? So what is the point? For one, compiling data on trans boys is a newer area of research so with new inroads in research in trans masculine people that would lead to cataloging more data and seeing more people transition because there isn’t data from decades ago so it is a statical standard to see new data overwhelm past stats. Further, Rowling, if these people are coming out as trans boys, there is no need to continue to call them “young women” that is another mean spirited phrasing you are using to intentionally cause hurt and pain in children that you swear you care about.

Additionally, the commentary on the research shows 2/3 of these children are coming out as non-binary, and not on any HRT, but some are on puberty blockers. This means no one is impacting their biology irreversibly, another lie in her piece. Most importantly she reports this huge boon in numbers, but the researcher note that this is not a population study, these numbers were from queer and online spaces. So if there was no data on trans men online ten years ago, having any data would be exponentially larger than the standard of 0. Researchers are just now studying online spaces and trans expression, the internet was not even widely used in homes until the late nineties, at most the early 2000s saw the rise of social media spaces but even these were not places to be out or connect until groups, micro blogs, and anonymous user sites became more common around 2010. There is not a sudden surge or rapid change there is just now data compared to no data.

As she talks of detransitioners she paints a picture that thousands of thousands of kids are forced to come out and then damage their lives and realize it was a phase. Another statement of false pretenses because Stonewall in the UK shows that in recent years the number of people that have detranisitioned is less that 1% of people that come out. That means there is no large group each year detransitioning, it is people that have explored their gender and realized transition wasn’t it, over 98% of these folks on the Stonewall site have never had hormones nor surgery.

Even more, the reason people stop the transition is the reason that Rowling lies about and uses as the reason they come out. She states kids are coming out because family pressure, religious pressure, culture pressure driven by trans and homophobia. False, when we come out we face the unrelenting pressure from people like her that doubt we are real, tell us we are hell bound, and see our family leave. That pressure can halt many people from pursuing their transition. Rowling uses another myth and ties it to an outright lie. As she continues to malign trans people, and trans children she lies about their lives to drive a narrative that she is the one being persecuted. She can’t understand, or rather, can’t live with the burden of being publicly wrong and harmful, so she must make others the criminals and the evil ones.

In the midst of this statement she highlights Lisa Littman the professor that coined the term Rapid-Onset Gender Dysphoria. The researcher has had her work rescinded because of wider complaints citing its inaccurate findings, and dubious methodology. So as she spews her own uncited lies, she now calls in a widely discredited researcher that has published false research and been condemned for it to her defense. More on Lisa can be summed up by stating

Scientific critics and trans advocates have long criticized the methods chosen by, Lisa Littman of Brown University. Within a week of its publication in August 2018, PLOS One, the journal in which the study appeared, announced that it would seek “further expert assessment on the study’s methodology and analyses,” citing reader concerns. This, in turn, prompted Brown to remove a press release touting its findings. Just last month, PLOS One published a correction and an apology, while also noting that the study’s results were largely unchanged.

Nothing in the research was at all true, and it used a narrative of parents that didn’t connect with their children and felt shocked of their coming out as the biggest reason to discredit trans people, and trans children. Furthermore, the journal it was published in was not peer reviewed, and when Littman’s peers reviewed it the journal had to rescind the paper because of how much of it was simply fiction. This fiction is what a fiction writer uses to discredit the reality and truthful science of the transgender experience. Are we seeing a theme? If you don’t have research on your side, and you don’t have being right on your side, you have to lie. Rowling has went from being a stealth TERF to a fully slanderous and venomous woman that will weave lies to attack innocent trans women and trans children so she can sleep at night rather than learn.

As we go on under her fourth reason Rowling writes this sudden approval of trans kids is because of the false idea that

The argument of many current trans activists is that if you don’t let a gender dysphoric teenager transition, they will kill themselves.

So unpacking that, we have a woman and a celebrity that uses tax write-offs and her money to supposedly advocate for children now saying that children that are suicidal are liars, but she is a paragon of truth. Seriously, she believes that we craft suicide fiction to live a lie that we will later regret. A recent study that surveyed over 20,000 trans adults found this:

20,619 transgender people found that 90 percent of trans adults who wanted, but could not access, puberty blockers experienced suicidal thoughts. For transgender adults who had been able to access puberty blockers, it was a significantly lower 75 percent.

Less than 3 percent of trans adults who say they wanted puberty suppression during adolescence actually received it — showing how hard it has been, historically, to access this particular treatment for gender dysphoria.

So Rowling being a biological woman, without a child, and without a trans child is refuting research that shows a 90% suicidal ideation in people refused puberty blockers and instead believes they are simply good fiction writers at best and liars at worst. I think that makes my stomach turn at the hate and venom she is slinging at my younger trans siblings, many who have loved her books. Not just that but it shows 3% of trans adults actually were able to even receive puberty blockers, so 97% of trans adults, like me underwent a puberty that permanently damaged our bodies, caused extreme dysphoria, and has in turn made fitting Rowling’s criteria of a small, silent demure woman hard. So she wants us to suffer as teens so we can be jeered at as adults because she is a good woman.

I also find it important to note that Harry Potter himself, Daniel Radcliffe, recently denounced Rowling’s words in partnership with the Trevor Project that makes sure trans kids and queer kids don’t commit suicide because their parents may be listening to the lies and hate of Rowling.

What gets additionally murky and weird for me is how in this whole process Rowling has tried to act as if she is trans. We have seen her in tweets allude to her imaginary trans friends and circle, but here it just got odd to follow. In her piece she writes

I’ve wondered whether, if I’d been born 30 years later, I too might have tried to transition. … When I read about the theory of gender identity, I remember how mentally sexless I felt in youth. As I didn’t have a realistic possibility of becoming a man back in the 1980s, it had to be books and music that got me through both my mental health issues and the sexualised scrutiny and judgement that sets so many girls to war against their bodies in their teens. Fortunately for me, I found my own sense of otherness, and my ambivalence about being a woman, reflected in the work of female writers and musicians who reassured me that, in spite of everything a sexist world tries to throw at the female-bodied, it’s fine not to feel pink, frilly and compliant inside your own head; it’s OK to feel confused, dark, both sexual and non-sexual, unsure of what or who you are.

What is perplexing is she talks about her own struggle with gender, and her own thoughts of becoming a man. What are we to do with this? Is Rowling really just writing from a sense of her own internalize transphobia, or is she trying to say trans people just need to get out of their emo phase? As she goes on she writes that almost 90% of trans kids will not transition fully, which is an area research that has very few if any fully reputable published positions. More so, for trans kids, they are given puberty blockers that have no impact on future sexual reproduction and the body. A child given puberty blockers as a teen simply delays the start of puberty, once the medication is stopped the body will adjust with a delayed puberty. So even if the rate was this high, which is is not in any verified research, there is no threat to the child or the value of their sexual reproduction, which seems to what Rowling cares about. It’s like throughout the entire pieces all she cares about is that a woman bleed and give birth, nothing else. It consistently comes down to womanhood being about blood, and that is such a narrow experience of what truly makes one a woman. It also discredits other woman that can’t give birth, or have other developmental birth differences.

After she talks about how adorbs we are as trans kids that she wants to see dead. I say that because she wants to refuse care, medical help, mental counseling and puberty blockers that give a longer life. She wants to refuse these so more people are suicidal because if we kill ourselves she is safer on Twitter from a meme or GIF.

She goes on to use another straw man argument we are familiar with here in the United States

A man who intends to have no surgery and take no hormones may now secure himself a Gender Recognition Certificate and be a woman in the sight of the law. Many people aren’t aware of this.

Now let’s think about, a man would have to come out to his family, come out to his doctor, come out to his workplace, his faith community, go to counseling and then get a GRC just to visit women spaces presenting male. As a trans woman in the trans community each day, something I know Rowling isn’t a part of, we have never seen this. Why would one go through a process of outing themselves just to get a certificate. That’s like saying I can ride a horse on I-95 at rush hour, just because, even though it is never done. Further from the UK website on receiving a GCR one must do the following:

Standard route

Apply by the standard route if all the following are true:

  • you’re 18 or over
  • you’ve been diagnosed with gender dysphoria (discomfort with your birth gender) — this is also called gender identity disorder, gender incongruence or transsexualism
  • you’ve lived in your acquired gender for at least 2 years
  • you intend to live in your acquired gender for the rest of your life

Alternative route

Apply by the alternative route if all the following are true:

  • you’re 18 or over
  • you’ve been diagnosed with gender dysphoria or had surgery to change your sexual characteristics
  • you live in England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland most of the time
  • you intend to live in your acquired gender for the rest of your life
  • you’re in (or have been in) a protected marriage or protected civil partnership before 10 December 2014 (16 December 2014 for Scottish marriages and civil partnerships)
  • you’ve lived in your acquired gender for at least 6 years before 10 December 2014 (16 December 2014 for Scottish marriages and civil partnerships)

Nowhere does it say one can just get a certificate one has to live the gender they wish to designate themselves as, and be recognized as. It also states you must have a clinical diagnosis, and if you are a man, over 18, must intend to live this for the rest of you life. It is IMPOSSIBLE to just get a GCR with no diagnosis, and no living as a woman. Rowling is a liar, and expects most readers to not do the research and trust her because she is a celebrity that wrote Harry Potter, rich, and white.

The most damnable and “cancellable” writing I see comes next as Rowling writes with pure hatred punching a keyboard I am sure this

From the leader of the free world’s long history of sexual assault accusations and his proud boast of ‘grabbing them by the pussy’, to the incel (‘involuntarily celibate’) movement that rages against women who won’t give them sex, to the trans activists who declare that TERFs need punching and re-educating, men across the political spectrum seem to agree: women are asking for trouble. Everywhere, women are being told to shut up and sit down, or else.

Broken down, trans women are men, and worse off we are men like Trump that just want to rape women. That is at the heart of what Rowling believes. So as she writes about adorable trans kids, and her “transsexual woman” friend she calls us all men. She unabashedly does not want to learn, but takes radical statements and applies them to every trans woman regardless. She uses fake research, lies about the law, lies about clinical care and transition care to push an agenda that all trans women are men and are rapist men. She is trying to push for us to be killed and jailed because she wants it, and hates us. There is nothing of love and compassion as she continues her diatribe. To her we must be eradicated now, that is what she wants on no uncertain terms. As she hates Trump, and incels, she hates trans women because she doesn’t understand us, she hasn’t educated herself, and she is afraid of that which she does not understand.

Rowling again

I do not want to make natal girls and women less safe. When you throw open the doors of bathrooms and changing rooms to any man who believes or feels he’s a woman — and, as I’ve said, gender confirmation certificates may now be granted without any need for surgery or hormones — then you open the door to any and all men who wish to come inside. That is the simple truth.

Rowling argues because she was violently assaulted by a man, therefore, all trans women are men that are out to assault her. Not only that, she wants to put trans lives into dangerous spaces. She wants certain women to be safe so other women are less safe. Take that at its word, she wants to be safe, and wants violence to be carried out against trans women. She does not believe trans women are women, and further she goes on to imply here even women that have undergone GCS are not women.That is why Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe have come out and said unequivocally trans women are women. She again talks of natal girls, and women, as an intersex trans woman, with XX chromosomes I don’t know what to even do with that, I was born a natal girl with sexual differences. So even though I have XX chromosomes and born that way does that mean Rowling wants to protect me, or does extra skin and broader shoulders mean I should die? See that is where her lack of research and education matter, she doesn’t understand how many people are born intersex and she is the one talking in extremes, if her advice was taken 1 in 400 babies would face extreme discrimination because all she cares about is the shape and depth of a vagina.

What is more concerning is how she writes

I spent much of Saturday in a very dark place inside my head, as memories of a serious sexual assault I suffered in my twenties recurred on a loop.

As trans women, and trans allies called her out for abusive words and transphobic tactics she has labelled me and others as sexual assault perpetrators. Rather than look at the world, see her words were hurtful, and untrue and learn, she went to a place of gaslighting those she attacked and now calls anyone that dares to speak out against her a rapist. Because many of us dared to question and challenge her hatred we are the violent abusers, not simply calling abuse and transphobia for what it is, because she again is above all reproach because she has an imaginary trans friend. Much the same rhetoric of those condemned and proven to be racists, they can’t because they know a black man. This is a disgusting tactic, and I would have hoped she was above it.

Because we speak out, and denounce her lies she says

Huge numbers of women are justifiably terrified by the trans activists; I know this because so many have got in touch with me to tell their stories. They’re afraid of doxxing, of losing their jobs or their livelihoods, and of violence.

But endlessly unpleasant as its constant targeting of me has been, I refuse 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.

So because she has tweeted lies, false claims, and supported a woman that harassed a colleague we are horrible. Because we will report people that harass and assault us at work, at home, and at the bar we are terrorists. Because we read medical journals, and know sex is a spectrum we are evil. She is terrified because she knows she is wrong and her bank account may take a hit, but if you think you can continue to live as a loudmouth bigot and verbally harass people as free speech you will be held accountable Rowling. Perhaps Rowling a novelist should return to reading. Reading books by trans women, books by peer reviewed doctors and researchers. Like Bradbury wrote though this new data is dangerous, millennial trans women are to be stopped she sees our books, and our research like a loaded gun,

A book is a loaded gun in the house next door. Burn it. Take the shot from the weapon.

For Rowling reading these new studies are dangerous, listening to trans women is dangerous. Therefore take our words away, ban us from Twitter, ban us from publishing, ban us from speaking. She wants to take our power away so she can be hateful. Trans women writing their truth that challenges her lies is weaponry that terrifies her.

More so, she believes she doesn’t have to read anything she has written already, she is the preeminent writer of her time so what else could be said that is more important than her word? Surely the pen behind Dumbledore can never be wrong, anything she has not encountered that challenges her is a threat. Therefore we must be silenced, rather than her admit ignorance. We should be killed and kill ourselves because she believes lies about us and we dared to speak out against it.

As she closes she implores for women to protest against trans women and children more. Let that sink in.

The one thing that gives me hope is that the women who can protest and organise, are doing so, and they have some truly decent men and trans people alongside them.

The women that has more money than one will ever use is using her resources, and voice to advocate for removal of rights for women and children. The only thing that gives her hope is that people like her will take away our rights and our lives. The same woman that started her piece by arguing she spends her time and money on behalf of women and children now advocates that women and children will have no rights, and be removed from society.

The author of a beloved children’s series is truly an organizer of segregation, and discrimination. In the midst of racial injustice and the death of hundreds of trans women each year she uses her voice and power not to advocate for equality, but to disassemble it. Her tools are right wing twitter bots, unverified research, and imaginary friends. But at her heart she wants trans women and trans children dead and gone.

I’ll close with a final word from Ray Bradbury that may just make some sense to you, me, and J.K.

You can’t make people listen. They have to come round in their own time, wondering what happened and why the world blew up under them. It can’t last.

The discrimination and hate can not last. As much as Rowling and others continue to lie, demonize and threaten the existence of trans women, we will still be here. We will see a new world, this old world can’t last. Hopefully Rowling will see the world burning, because it is, and maybe then she will realize she was gasoline on the fire and a reason so many people decided to stop her witches brew of hate. In the rebirth I hope she sees that her hate led many people to darker places that getting off Twitter for a weekend. I hope she learns her word hung children from their rooms because even Hogwarts didn’t want them. I hope for the sake of the future she learns to read again, and in the process can find a way to admit her ignorance and hate and support the lives she is trying to destroy.

Photo by Denin Lawley on Unsplash

The Transition Transmission

The place to embrace the Triumphs and Tribulations of those…

Shana Carroll

Written by

My journey as a trans woman in a world that consistently tries to erase me. I am here and you are welcomed to follow along.

The Transition Transmission

The place to embrace the Triumphs and Tribulations of those who Transitioned and risked everything to live authentically.

Shana Carroll

Written by

My journey as a trans woman in a world that consistently tries to erase me. I am here and you are welcomed to follow along.

The Transition Transmission

The place to embrace the Triumphs and Tribulations of those who Transitioned and risked everything to live authentically.

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