Harry Potter and the Scales of Justice

I’ve gone through life knowing there are a good many people who think it would be perfectly fine to exterminate me.

Transphobia is a misnomer it is hatred pure and simple, whether from Evangelicals or JK Rowling or certain radical feminists.

Bigotry destroys the lives and souls of those targeted with that bigotry. It doesn’t matter what robe or uniform or label that bigotry hides behind nor does it matter what group bigots target for dehumanization.

I’ve listened to people defend JK Rowling and other TERFs, defend the hatred and abuse of transfolks while those same people are quick to condemn racism and other forms of bigotry. How can they look in the mirror and not see they are the same sort of bigots as those they decry?

I’m old, I survived, I am tougher than most of you can imagine being. I came out before Stonewall when it was still a crime for me to express even the smallest elements of my being and I survived.

Do somehow think I haven’t earned the right to speak truth to power and denounce the anti-trans bigotry of JK Rowling and other TERFs?

Never Again!

From The New York Times:  https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/16/opinion/scotus-lgbt-jk-rowling-trans.html

A little bit of good news, in a dire month for L.G.B.T.Q. people.

By Jennifer Finney Boylan
June 16, 2020

“I used to think people like you should be, you know, exterminated,” the nice young man said to me. “But after listening to you speak, I’ve really changed my mind!”

This was after a lecture I’d given a few years ago at a college in Ohio. He looked at me proudly, clearly hoping that I’d be cheered that my words had opened his heart.

But that word, “exterminated,” tempered my happiness somewhat.

Sometimes I forget that there are people who want to wipe me off the face of the earth.

I forget, even though the Trump administration does its best to remind me, every day. For the last three and a half years, this administration has done all it can to make the lives of queer people more miserable. I suppose it’s trying to push back on our “gay agenda.” You know, the one in which people like me keep asking for “special rights.”

What are these special rights I want? The same ones everybody else has. What is my gay agenda? It is the hope to live my life in peace.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court finally issued its ruling on Bostock v. Clayton County, a long-awaited decision that would determine whether it was legal to fire workers for being gay, bisexual or transgender. It was with happy surprise that I saw that the court had ruled in favor of the L.G.B.T.Q. plaintiff, 6-to-3. Remarkably, the majority opinion was written by Justice Neil Gorsuch, the man whom Senator Mitch McConnell had wrangled onto the court after refusing to even consider President Barack Obama’s more liberal nominee, Merrick Garland.

Even in his dissent, Justice Brett Kavanaugh gave us a little rainbow shout-out, admitting that gay men and lesbians have “worked hard for many decades to achieve equal treatment in fact and in law. They have exhibited extraordinary vision, tenacity, and grit, battling often steep odds in the legislative and judicial arenas, not to mention in their daily lives.”

That was nice of him, although it’d have been nicer if his words hadn’t erased bisexual and trans Americans. It’d also have been nice if he’d, you know, voted yes.

But a win is a win. Until then, it had been a thoroughly miserable June for transgender people and our allies — and that’s not even counting the pandemic, the national economic collapse and the curse of police violence.

Last week, the author J.K. Rowling felt it necessary to unveil a screed against trans folks that ran to nearly 4,000 words, and read like a greatest-hits list of false statements and groundless fears.

She stated that trans men transition because being a woman is hard; they do not. She stated that trans women pose a threat to others in the ladies’ room; we do not. In fact, more Republican congressmen have been busted for causing trouble in public lavatories than trans women. But no one wants to throw them out of the Coast Guard.

The effect of Ms. Rowling’s manifesto was immediate and passionate — I heard from many young L.G.B.T.Q. people who’d grown up reading her books who responded to her words with sadness and fury. Surely Ms. Rowling was familiar with a series of books about a group of outcasts who were treated differently simply because of who they were?

It was nice that Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint all have released eloquent and unambiguous statements in support of trans people. I was especially cheered to see Mr. Grint join the fray — surely, Ms. Rowling, when you’ve lost Ron Weasley, you’ve lost everybody.

Continue reading at:  https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/16/opinion/scotus-lgbt-jk-rowling-trans.html

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