And Then They Came for J.K. Rowling

"In early June, Rowling ridiculed a new campaign by international development organization Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council that aims to create “a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate.” Rowling tweeted in response: “I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? "

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I’ve been following this story closely.

I’ve been an interested observer of the HP fandom (for reasons too complicated to get into here) for many years, and what I’m seeing is a Frankenstein story.

She created this vast and dedicated fan base, but couldn’t control it and now they’ve all turned on her.

At the same time, she alienated her non-liberal fanbase, so she’s caught in the middle.


You have a funny definition of “all” which is like a teenager saying “everybody hates me!!1”

If she’s being lynched on Twitter or Instagram or something, big deal. That crowd would lynch anyone.


Her Big Name Fans have turned on her, the kids she made famous have turned on her, Warner Brothers is twisting themselves into knots because the next Fantastic Beasts is on development.

TBF, it’s flown muchly under the radar here and with Covid19 and George Floyd attracting national attention its been a little bit “buried”.
But the pop-culture and fandom sections of the internet are very much following this, as well as some LGBT factions.

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Boy ain’t that the truth.

Harry Potter is, without question, one of my favorite books series. I love the books, I love the movies, I love the world. I even love the Fantastic Beasts movies. (This better not mess up their release schedule. They’re great and I want more of them.)

Sadly, I have very little respect for Rowling anymore. She drunk the kool-aide and decided to try to retroactively change characters to fit an agenda. They’re her characters of course, and she can say what she wants about them, but it always felt like pandering; like trying to buy into the new cultural zeitgeist. And it just got worse and worse until I stopped caring about what she had to say on the series.

I agree with what she said this time, and I support her right to say what she wants, but I can’t help but laugh that the mob has turned on her. I knew it would, they always eat their own. The second she got on board with their ideology her fate was sealed. It makes me sad.

Two of the core three have turned on her. That one took me by surprise a bit. I’m not surprised by Emma, she went hardcore woke a while back, but I was genuinely surprised that Daniel Radcliffe essentially told her off.


Whether it’s deliberate, just sloppy speech and thinking habits, or a bit of both (and I suspect the latter), modern speakers of English are losing the ability to distinguish between genders. We discussed this just the other day in another thread:

It is ironic, though, that Joanne Rowling herself sought to obscure the fact that she is a woman (the “K” was adopted from a relative) when she wrote under a gender-neutral pen name. I once worked for a woman who signed her name “J.B. Smith” (only it was not “Smith”) for what I suspect were similar reasons — a woman in a male-dominated field who did not want to be seen as a woman when she submitted her documents.

I’ve been following this too. You can never, never have a nuanced discussion on Twitter, it just isn’t built for it. Cancel culture is just toxic, and it plays havoc with mental health. I do hope Rowling is okay - I’ve seen a fraction of the abuse she’s received and it’s truly horrendous.

Rowling didn’t try to obscure it - it’s widely avaliable that Rowling’s publishers told her to add the “Kathleen”, because they thought the book wouldn’t sell as well if people knew she was female.


I’m not following you here. How does "adding ‘Kathleen’ " make her name any less feminine? I was of the understanding that her publishers (and possibly she herself) thought the books wouldn’t sell as well if it were obvious that she were a female — that’s really selling readers short, if you ask me, Agatha Christie (and many other female authors) didn’t have that problem — so she used initials. My wife was a big Harry Potter fan — the British fantasy genre just leaves me cold, that’s why I can’t read CS Lewis or JRR Tolkien, de gustibus — and my first thought, when I heard the author’s name, was “what’s the matter, is she trying to keep people from knowing she’s a woman or something?”.

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That’s what I meant - she added Kathleen to make her name “J.K” so readers didn’t know she was female. Because her publishers thought it wouldn’t sell otherwise, she wouldn’t have done it had it not been suggested to her.

I completely agree! And within a couple of months everyone knew anyway and it made no difference.

To come back on topic, the one thing Rowling really has going for her now it her immense wealth and influence. She’s not someone who can be told to sit down and shut up, on any of her opinions. Although it must be upsetting for so many people to criticise her and come out against her, particularly people she’s known for years.

Oh, OK, I see now. “J.K. Rowling” sounds less awkward than simply “J. Rowling”.

I find the whole “pregnant people” and “people who menstruate” thing a little tiresome, but I also think it’s pretty tiresome when people get up in arms about it. Rowling’s response was unnecessarily snarky. The phrase “people who menstruate” is probably just a somewhat misguided attempt to show sensitivity toward the incredibly small proportion of people who menstruate who do not identify as women. As a person who menstruates, it doesn’t really bother me what some other people who menstruate choose to call themselves.

Leaving aside the question of whether people who menstruate are by definition women, I think the story just illustrates why people find the militant SJW types so irritating. JK Rowling was mildly snarky on Twitter, and the response is this crazy histrionic meltdown about how she’s a moral monster and her tweet is essentially violence. It’s like these people take a position (usually one held by only a small and vocal minority), create an almost religious taboo around it, and then lead an internet mob if someone violates it. The reaction to this stuff is just so overly dramatic.


I’m hoping this brouhaha brings to light just how cultlike and vicious the transactivists are, and start asking themselves some serious questions about how “oppressed “ they actually are.


I keep seeing this over and over—that first JKR was moral and now she is not.

How does our society even define moral anymore?

We have enormous chasms in our culture , everybody with an opinion and very few people with information to back up their opinions.


For several things, basically anything Curse Child related, I don’t believe are canon, to me, she is only credited as a writer because it’s based from her series. It’s essentially just a disclaimer.

I do feel for all the teachers and parents though that are currently reading and getting their kids involved in her new book, there is so much awfulness on Twitter that just replying to her with a child’s drawing must feel daunting.

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Cursed Child is the only bit of Rowling I’ve never read. I own it and my wife read it. She didn’t care for it and that, mixed with all the negative stuff I’d heard about it, made me not care to ever read it.

I honestly didn’t even realize she’d released a new book. It is pretty bad though, how much hate she’s getting. I also feel bad for anyone wanting to just engage with her on friendly terms.


I think it’s gotten ridiculous on both sides. I agree with you. Rowling said one thing that was a bit snarky and made a bit of a dig at something that was itself rather ridiculous. The reaction has been totally out of proportion From the kind of abuse she’s gotten, you’d think she’d done something genuinely awful.


Most exorcists say to stay away from Harry Potter and JK Rowling. She has the tattoo “solve et coagula” on her arm which was mentioned by Bishop Vigano to President Trump. Also associated with Baphomet. Pretty interesting. I’ve never read her books and always stayed away. It is interesting how many Catholics cannot deny themselves her wicked works and attacks on our children with her glorification of magic. Pretty sad actually to see many Catholics very much of the world these days.

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I’m curious to your thoughts on Lord of the Rings then, since Tolkien was Catholic and yet characters in that series practice magic.


It’s not about the magical fantasy elements of the works; it is about the fact that some of the names of characters are names of actual demons. And some of the spells are genuine satanic incantations.
To use the name of a demon - which is actually a descriptor of its function - without the authority of the provision of faculties by the Church, gives one no authority over it. And to invoke a demonic title without faculties empowers the said demon.
As stated above, Rowling has the same inscription on her arm as the satanic Baphomet: no Catholic should go anywhere near Rowling or her works.
Anyone who is interested should search the web for Fr. Ripperger’s exposition on Rowling and her work.
I know many people enjoy these books/ films, but that’s just the truth, I’m afraid.

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