J.K. Rowling Criticized for Supporting Anti-Trans Woman

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has garnered criticism after supporting a woman whose contract was not renewed because of anti-transgender comments she made on social media.

Maya Forstater, a visiting fellow at the Center for Global Development, did not have her contract renewed by her employer after tweeting “men cannot change into women”; a response to the Gender Recognition Act, a law proposed in the U.K. to allow trans people to self-identify their gender.

According to a post Forstater made on Medium back in May, she appealed her employer’s decision, arguing that her statements were protected under the U.K.’s Equality Act 2010 and likening them to “other religious or philosophical beliefs.”

On Thursday (December 19), Rowling tweeted her support of Forstater, claiming she was “forced” out of her job “for stating sex is real” and hashtagging the post #IStandWithMaya.

Rowling received backlash not only from people on social media, but LGBTQ advocacy organizations as well.

“[T]he World Health Organization—among countless other medical authorities—validate trans people in their authentic gender identity,” said Charlotte Clymer, a spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign. ‘It is quite clear [Rowling] doesn’t understand the first thing about the trans community or the science at play.”


This is not the first instance of the author receiving flak over anti-trans sentiments. In 2018, Rowling liked a tweet likening support for trans people to “misogyny.”

Rowling’s reps issued a statement apologizing for the like, insinuating that it was unintentional and she only “had a clumsy and middle-aged moment.”