‘Harry Potter’ actor who played Hagrid defends J.K. Rowling’s trans claims
On Monday, J.K. Rowling's new book Troubled Blood, about a cisgender male who dresses as a woman to lure and kill his victims, caught the attention of the internet. The book caused outrage following her transgender claims over the past few months and led to #RIPJKRowling trending on Twitter.
Now, Harry Potter actor Robbie Coltrane who played Hagrid is defending Rowling's new book and previous claims.
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J.K. Rowling has been in hot water over the past few months due to her controversial comments about the transgender community. Back in December, Rowling faced massive backlash for tweeting in support of Maya Forstater who lost her job for misgendering trans people.
Following this, she then began following and liking a number of anti-trans accounts and sentiments including “self-professed transphobe” Magdalen Berns on Twitter. Then, back in June, she shared an article titled Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate with a caption mocking the phrase “people who menstruate.”
As well, Rowling recently returned her 2019 Kennedy Human Rights award after Kerry Kennedy denounced the author’s transgender comments.
“From her own words,” Kennedy said. “I take Rowling’s position to be that the sex one is assigned at birth is the primary and determinative factor of one’s gender, regardless of one’s gender identity- a position that I categorically reject.”
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More recently, the synopsis for her new book Troubled Blood was brought to the attention of onlookers and fans. The book follows a private detective named Cormoran Strike as he investigates a cisgender male serial killer who wears women’s clothing to kill female victims.
Given Rowling's recent claims, the plot of Troubled Blood angered many. As the Telegraph says in a review of the book, “one wonders what critics of Rowling’s stance on trans issues will make of a book whose moral seems to be: never trust a man in a dress."
Now, Coltrane is defending the Harry Potter author amid the controversy. The actor told the Radio Times that the social media generation is, essentially, blowing her comments out of proportion.
“I don’t think what she said was offensive really," Coltrane says. "I don’t know why but there’s a whole Twitter generation of people who hang around waiting to be offended. They wouldn’t have won the war, would they? That’s me talking like a grumpy old man, but you just think, ‘Oh, get over yourself. Wise up, stand up straight and carry on.’”
Coltrane further says he doesn't want to get involved in the row between Rowling and the internet.
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“I don’t want to get involved in all of that because of all the hate mail and all that shit, which I don’t need at my time of life."
Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and Eddie Redmayne are among the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts stars to speak up in support of the trans community in recent months. As well, Daniel Radcliffe previously stated "transgender women are women."
Last month, Rowling clarified her stance on the transgender community after returning her humanitarian award. In the statement, Rowling denied that she is transphobic.
Instead, she restated her controversial stance and cited that “a growing number” of “experts and whistleblowers” are “concerned about the huge rise in the number of girls wanting to transition.”
“Kerry Kennedy recently felt it necessary to publish a statement denouncing my views on RFKHR’s website,” Rowling said. “The statement incorrectly implied that I was transphobic. And that I am responsible for harm to trans people. As a longstanding donor to LGBT charities and a supporter of trans people’s right to live free of persecution, I absolutely refute the accusation that I hate trans people or wish them ill, or that standing up for the rights of women is wrong, discriminatory, or incites harm or violence to the trans community.”
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What are your thoughts on J.K. Rowling's comments and Robbie Coltrane's reason for defending her? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.