In an attempt to salvage something out of the now widely-reported Twitter error JK Rowling made last Friday, which must have bewildered many of her followers who’d never heard of me and which had unpleasant consequences for both JK and for me, comedy writer and ally, Graham Linehan, invited me and my husband, Alan Henness, to tell the story behind the tweet in the hope of reaching a wider audience.
Here is a link to a recording of our conversation. And below is the blog post I wrote earlier today.
Those who swarmed to this website last weekend and entered JK Rowling’s name in the search function would only have found a blog I wrote last year about the extraordinary attacks on her for shamelessly following a few feminists on Twitter and ‘liking’ gender-critical tweets.
Until now, I haven’t felt compelled to write anything more about her.
But when one of the most famous authors in the world refers to me in a tweet, I feel kind of obligated to say something, so here it is.
This line, which manages to be both unusually honest and typically disdainful at the same time, occurs two minutes into a video by a popular transgender youtuber called Natalie Wynn, better known as ContraPoints. The video is entitled Gender Critical and, at the time of writing, it has had close to a million and a half views and attracted 90k ‘likes’.
Like most videos produced by trans activists, I wouldn’t be giving it the time of day were it not for the fact that I’ve seen it promoted left, right and centre on social media by people who obviously think it’s good and, in a perverse way, it is. Clearly, a lot of time, work, skill and creativity went into its production. Most importantly, the arguments are presented in such a way as to sound convincing even to some who would probably claim to be scientific sceptics but who, for some reason, leave their scepticism to one side when it comes to pseudo-scientific and regressive transgender ideology.
The fact that I see the video being promoted by people who should know better, means that I have to take a closer look at the content to see what I can learn and what I can pass on to people who, like me, find Wynn’s persona and style rather irritating but who, unlike me, aren’t willing to spend time studying the transcript, which I’ve copied here.
Having done that, I’ve decided that there is too much to respond to for one blog so I’ll focus on one thing for now:
John Boyne, author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and some other books, is the latest celebrity to have got on the wrong side of the trans cult and has deactivated his Twitter account. Having read the piece he wrote that provoked their ire, I was set to lay into him myself on this blog for some pretty nasty comments he made in it about Graham Linehan. But then I saw that he’d apologised, so I’m going to be a bit gentler. Just a bit.
In a recent article for the Irish Times entitled, Why I support trans rights but reject the word ‘cis’, Boyne tells us why he wrote his latest novel, My Brother’s Name is Jessica. Unsurprisingly, it is a story of a child’s acceptance of his brother, who thinks he was “born in the wrong body”. Also unsurprisingly, it’s already got a one-star review on Amazon by a trans activist, who hasn’t actually read the book because it’s not even out until later this week! (Edit: the one-star review has now been removed).