J.K. Rowling drew criticism from celebs including Daniel Radcliffe and Jonathan Van Ness, among others, after she mocked a headline with the term "people who menstruate" on Twitter over the weekend. The headline of the article -- published by Devex, which describes itself as a media platform for the global development community -- reads, "Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate." Rowling had an issue specifically with the more inclusive term "people who menstruate."
Rowling posted the article and tweeted, "'People who menstruate.' I'm sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?"
‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 6, 2020
Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate https://t.co/cVpZxG7gaA
Some Twitter users slammed the Harry Potter author for the tweet, accusing her of excluding transgender men and women. Rowling didn't shy away from defending her position.
"I've spent much of the last three years reading books, blogs and scientific papers by trans people, medics and gender specialists," she tweeted. "Never assume that because someone thinks differently, they have no knowledge. I respect every trans person’s right to live any way that feels authentic and comfortable to them. I'd march with you if you were discriminated against on the basis of being trans. At the same time, my life has been shaped by being female. I do not believe it's hateful to say so."
"If sex isn't real, there's no same-sex attraction. If sex isn't real, the lived reality of women globally is erased," she continued. "I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. It isn't hate to speak the truth."
GLAAD responded to Rowling by urging people to support organizations dedicated to helping black transgender men and women.
"JK Rowling continues to align herself with an ideology which willfully distorts facts about gender identity and people who are trans," the organization tweeted. "In 2020, there is no excuse for targeting trans people. We stand with trans youth, especially those Harry Potter fans hurt by her inaccurate and cruel tweets."