Over the weekend, author J.K. Rowling received criticism for her tweet that was insensitive to the trans community. The tweet was a comment on an article written about the lack of resources for people who menstruate, in which Rowling mocked the article for its specific word choice, which instead of using ‘women’, uses the word, ‘people’.
‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?
Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate https://t.co/cVpZxG7gaA
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 6, 2020
Followers were outraged at the insensitivity of Rowling’s tweets and were quick to enlighten Rowling that people who are not women still menstruate, while others advocated for the use of non-gendered language.
This is not the first time that Rowling had been insensitive to the transgender community and has made anti-trans remarks. In December of 2019, the writer tweeted out support for tax expert, Maya Forstater, who lost her job due to transphobic tweets she had written herself.
Dress however you please.
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
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) December 19, 2019
Celebrities joined in on the conversation by condemning Rowling’s words. Queer Eye star Johnathan Van Ness, who identifies as non-binary, got straight to the point when calling out Rowling. He shared, “Trans women are women. Trans Black people & trans-non-Black people are discriminated against every single day. They’re dying. We’re fighting for Black people & trans people and you’re doing this?”
Transgender model, Monroe Bergdorf, also expressed her disappointment with the writer, tweeting, “To choose pride month to come out with yet more transphobia, in a time when people are coming together to call out bigotry, is an indicator of how you only care about liberation for people like YOU…”
The Good Place actress, Jameela Jamil took to Instagram to raise awareness regarding the shocking statistics for the transgender community. She shared, “the average life expectancy of a black trans woman is 35 years old because of societal otherizing and bigotry.” Jamil often uses her platform to speak up against marginalization and she asks individuals to continue hard conversations and promote fair treatment and inclusivity to all.