Daniel Radcliffe has responded to J.K. Rowling’s series of alleged homophobic tweets that she posted over the weekend, explaining that he felt “compelled” to speak out about the controversy because of his connection to the Harry Potter franchise. In an essay posted to The Trevor Project website, Radcliffe wanted to make his opinion clear: “Transgender women are women.”
“Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I,” wrote Radcliffe, referring to Rowling by her first name.
I love you, Daniel Radcliffe ❤️ https://t.co/0WtwOTDbFt
— Jesse Tyler Ferguson (@jessetyler) June 9, 2020
The 30-year-old also noted that his different opinion doesn’t mean that he and Rowling are “in-fighting” because that is not what this is about, and it’s not important right now.
On Saturday, Rowling tweeted a link to a Devex editorial titled “Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate.” She also added the comment: “‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”
Rowling argued that being a biological female has shaped her life, experiences, and career, and she doesn’t believe it is hateful to say so. She also voiced her longtime support for trans people, and said she would march with them if they were being discriminated against on the basis of being trans.
Fans quickly slammed Rowling, arguing that transgender men and nonbinary people also menstruate, while others who are biologically female do not menstruate due to medical reasons.
@jk_rowling has pinpointed why so many gay peeps are concerned about the new version of trans activism. We used to be comrade-in-arms with our trans mates until some extremists insisted biological sex was an illusion. Our legal protections and our identities are based on it. https://t.co/dag9xwNINf
— Malcolm Clark (@TwisterFilm) June 6, 2020
Radcliffe says that research from The Trevor Project shows that 78 percent of transgender and nonbinary youth have reported being the subject of discrimination because of their gender identity. He admitted he is still learning how to be a better ally, and knows there is more work to do.
Daniel Radcliffe also told Harry Potter fans that he is “deeply sorry” for the pain Rowling’s comments have caused. He added that if the books taught them that love is the strongest force in the universe and it can overcome anything – and if they believe that a character is trans, nonbinary, gender fluid, gay, or bisexual – then that is something “sacred” between the reader and the book.
“And in my opinion nobody can touch that. It means to you what it means to you and I hope that these comments will not taint that too much,” wrote Radcliffe.