Author of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling, has once again struck out against trans women, adding to a long laundry list of trans-exclusionary positions taken up by the author in recent years.
JK Rowling recently announced the launch of a privately funded, women-only sexual assault crisis centre in Edinburgh, Scotland.
‘Beira’s Place’ is said to offer free support for cisgender-women who have experienced sexual assault.
The idea for the initiative, as described by Rowling in an interview with Suzanne Moore, came to her after hearing a suggestion that women should “reframe their trauma”.
This stems from the concern that cis women’s “beliefs” might be questioned at sexual assault crisis centres.
“It’s not a political thing to me; this is personal,” she said.
“…I had the lightbulb moment and I thought, ‘I don’t have to pace around my kitchen ranting. I can actually do something about this.’ And that’s how it started. So here I am.”
When asked if Beira’s Place would support trans women who are victims of sexual assault, the organisation said it is a “women-only” service.
“We believe that women deserve to have certainty that, in using our services, they will not encounter anyone who is male,” said a spokesperson from Beira’s Place.
“Where appropriate, we will refer men or individuals identifying as trans women to other appropriate services”.
Deeply interconnected paths
Rape Crisis Scotland, which operates 17 centres across the country, told the BBC that it welcomed any new service that supports survivors of sexual assault.
However, they continued on, “it is crucial that the life-saving support offered by rape crisis centres is available to trans and nonbinary people.”
“All rape crisis services in Scotland offer support to trans women and have done so for 15 years. There has not been a single incident of anyone abusing this,” Rape Crisis Scotland said.
“We continue to see the paths to equality for women and trans people are being deeply interconnected and dependent on shared efforts to dismantle systems of discrimination.”
The comments put into perspective the baselessness of Rowling’s concerns, especially considering trans women are more likely to experience sexual assault than cisgender women.
Rowling’s unsafe safe space
Earlier in the interview with Moore, Rowling acknowledges that her opinions come from a place of privilege, which is why she feels the need to share them.
“The only time I’ve ever made reference to being cancelled, my book sales went up,” Rowling said.
She immediately follows this by lamenting not being able to “profess a belief in biology”:
“What is a ‘safe space’?” she asks. “For me, a safe space is not somewhere where I have to use only the ‘correct terms’ or where I am not allowed to talk about my own life experience.
“Or I am not allowed to profess a belief in biology. How is that a safe space for me? Of course not, nor is it a safe space for many, many women.”
Nevertheless, Rowling seems firmly set in her position of denying the existence of trans women.
The author even went so far as to take to Twitter to revel in her relatively-newfound reputation:
Merry Terfmas 😘
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) December 14, 2022
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