Enough is Enough

My last post was a plea to J.K. Rowling to stop ruining our favorite childhood series. I talked about how she inspired me and taught me feminism; she taught me it was okay to be afraid, to stand up to my bullies and to never give up the fight against patriarchy.

I have looked up to her and have strived to build strong female characters in my own art. The amount of disappointment and hurt caused be her transphobia in the name of women’s safety is massive. I am unable to fathom why she has so much hate in her heart, especially someone who claims to be an ally for battered women, who stands up against class inequalities, who has taught little girls the concept of courage. Have you never truly believed in equality? Were your morals of accepting folks even if they are different from you just story telling? Why the bias? All of this is beyond my understanding.

The audacity to question a person’s decision to transition to their authentic selves is bewildering. Why would you assume anyone would take drastic steps as coming out as transgender in the current political and transphobic climate if that isn’t their truth? It takes immense courage to walk through this life in a body that is alien and unfamiliar, we don’t need to insult their intelligence or their maturity. We, as allies, should strive to provide love and support rather than question and hate.

What makes it worse is her stubbornness to accept how wrong she actually is, her insistence that she is actually not transphobic but simply looking out for ‘real’ women and equating transition to a gateway to violence against women. What even is the logic behind these thoughts and how did you get from domestic abuse to transition being wrong? Then I realize hate doesn’t follow logic.

I have always had difficulty separating the art from the artist. As an artist myself, I know I leave a little piece of myself in every work of art I produce. To lose my security blanket, to have my cherished memories of Harry Potter be tainted by these hateful and unacceptable views has been very difficult. 2020 has been especially difficult for a lot of us and these views from J.K. Rowling have not made it easier. I am working everyday to get to a point where I can enjoy Harry Potter without J.K. I refuse to let her take away a work of fiction that taught me so much. I am saddened that the author failed to learn what so many of us learnt as children reading her books – love.

Let it Go!

Spoiler Alert: This post may contain spoilers for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Crimes of Grindelwald

This is not a book review but more of an author review. It is also a plea to my childhood hero to stop!

I am a huge Harry Potter fan. So much so that I was on the panel for Harry Potter Fandom at ComicCon. I grew up with the books and if you have seen my previous posts, you will know the series means a great deal to me.

Growing up, I admired J. K. Rowling. Her effortless portrayal of strong independent women was not only fascinating but also inspiring. She stood for feminism and encouraged young girls to follow in Hermoine’s path.

Over the years, the author has given us a lot of insight into the characters. Some heartbreaking like McGonagall’s past; some fairly obvious (to me, at least) like Dumbledore being gay and I have enjoyed each of these tidbits. They added depth and new dimensions to the characters I already loved.  It had always been fun discussing new information suddenly thrust upon us decades after our favorite series had ended.

But guess what? Too much of a good thing is bad! It all started with the fateful Cursed Child. ‘Disappointed’ would be an understatement. Cursed Child was one of the most sloppily written, money-grabbing piece of work I have ever read. To those of you that are going to jump at me and say she never wrote it, here’s what I have to say – signing off on that garbage was just as bad. Not only was it completely inconsistent with the characters we have come to know and love, the plot was ridiculous. I see the irony in calling a work of fantasy ridiculous but that’s exactly my point!

I have since come to forgive her for Cursed Child. But did it end there? If only! Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was acceptable but the casting of Johnny Depp is inexcusable from someone like J. K. Rowling. I was heartbroken that my hero, the one that stood for feminism and for women’s rights would allow a wife-beating abuser like Johnny Depp to star in one of the most prominent roles in her new franchise. A franchise which, by the way, is nothing but a ploy at making money.

If FBAWTFT was acceptable, Crimes of Grindelwald was awful. I am not going into detail about everything I think is wrong with the movie. It has been covered in many articles, besides that would take up almost two posts. I will, however, say this – there is no such thing as course correcting once a series has ended. It is important that J.K. Rowling accept the lack of representation (coming out and saying Hermoine is black or Dumbledore is gay AFTER the fact, doesn’t count). She needs to stop trying to “correct” her mistakes in Harry Potter. Nobody is perfect and one of the things that makes harry Potter so great are the flaws.

Whatever it is that J.K Rowling is trying to do with Nagini, having McGonagal teach at Hogwarts when she would have been 8 years old, Nicolas Flamel, problems with the Elder Wand and all the other million things that ruin the Harry Potter canon, needs to stop. We also do not need to know about wizards pissing themselves on the reg. So, can we please let Harry Potter go. Stop messing with our childhoods. Please, just stop it!