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After Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Eddie Redmayne and others react to JK Rowling’s controversial trans tweets

A host of celebrities who played pivotal roles in the Harry Potter film franchise have come out in support of the transgender community.

By: Entertainment Desk | New Delhi | Published: June 11, 2020 9:39:20 am
emma watson and jk rowling Emma Watson took to Twitter to extend support to the transgender community (Photo: Instagram/emmawatson; AP Images).

After her controversial statements on trans rights and activism, Harry Potter author JK Rowling has attracted an avalanche of reactions. While some of the comments have been in support of the writer, others are critical of her beliefs regarding biological sex and gender.

On Wednesday, Rowling shared a lengthy blog post detailing what she meant by her initial tweets regarding sex and gender of women, and how identifying sex as a real thing is important. She also came out as a sexual assault survivor in the same post and wrote, “If you could come inside my head and understand what I feel when I read about a trans woman dying at the hands of a violent man, you’d find solidarity and kinship. I have a visceral sense of the terror in which those trans women will have spent their last seconds on earth, because I too have known moments of blind fear when I realised that the only thing keeping me alive was the shaky self-restraint of my attacker.”

“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,” the writer added.

However, the author’s stance has not been welcomed by many celebrities. Not too long ago, actor Daniel Radcliffe had come out in support of transgender people and said, “Transgender women are women.” Post his stance, other Harry Potter actors like Emma Watson and Bonnie Wright have come forward with their individual statements on the subject.

Emma Watson, who essayed the role of Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter films, tweeted, “Trans people are who they say they are and deserve to live their lives without being constantly questioned or told they aren’t who they say they are. I want my trans followers to know that I and so many other people around the world see you, respect you and love you for who you are.”

Also read | Daniel Radcliffe apologises to Harry Potter fans hurt by JK Rowling’s anti-trans tweets

Bonnie Wright, known as Ginny Weasley to many HP fans, also took to Twitter to express her opinion and wrote, “If Harry Potter was a source of love and belonging for you, that love is infinite and there to take without judgment or question. Transwomen are Women. I see and love you, Bonnie x.”

Evanna Lynch, who portrayed Luna Lovegood in multiple movies, posted a lengthy statement on Twitter.

“I disagree with her (Rowling’s) opinion that cis-women are the most vulnerable minority in this situation and I think she’s on the wrong side of this debate. But that doesn’t mean she has completely lost her humanity,” read a section of the actor’s post.

Eddie Redmayne, who plays the lead role in the Fantastic Beasts franchise, told Variety, “Respect for transgender people remains a cultural imperative, and over the years I have been trying to constantly educate myself. This is an ongoing process. As someone who has worked with both J.K. Rowling and members of the trans community, I wanted to make it absolutely clear where I stand. I disagree with Jo’s comments. Trans women are women, trans men are men and non-binary identities are valid.”

Noma Dumezweni, who has essayed the role of Hermione in the Broadway productions of the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, tweeted the names of a bunch of transgender individuals and activists, and wrote, “I’ll defer to THEIR LIVED EXPERIENCES, not their erasure. And these are just the WOMEN! There is Magic in listening. This has stories for millennia. I know You Know All this…with love. Nx #TransRightsAreHumanRights.”

Chris Rankin, who played Percy Weasley in the Harry Potter movies, also tweeted in support of the transgender community.

Production house Warner Bros released a statement on the writer’s tweets which read, “The events in the last several weeks have firmed our resolve as a company to confront difficult societal issues. Warner Bros.’ position on inclusiveness is well established, and fostering a diverse and inclusive culture has never been more important to our company and to our audiences around the world. We deeply value the work of our storytellers who give so much of themselves in sharing their creations with us all. We recognize our responsibility to foster empathy and advocate understanding of all communities and all people, particularly those we work with and those we reach through our content.”

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