No TERFS Allowed

J.K. Rowling Scrubbed From Seattle Museum for Anti-Trans Views

It doesn’t pay to be a transphobe and J.K. Rowling is learning that her influence on pop culture is slowly being separated from her work.

Seattle’s Museum of Pop Culture announced that the famed writer and TERF (trans-exclusionary radical feminist) would no longer have her name, they refer to her as “You-Know-Who”, or likeness on various galleries to “reduce her impact.” Reduce away we say. The decision to do so comes after Chris Moore, the museum’s project manager, published a recent blog post criticizing the Harry Potter writer’s transphobic comments and announced that they would find new ways to proceed with promoting Harry Potter content. 

“Long conversations are being had and a lot of considerations around what to do with problematic people and content because instances like this are going to keep happening,” wrote Moore in the blog post. 

Now, it seems that their new way of handling things is to scrub “She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named” from the galleries of the museum. Many have called Rowling out for her transphobic comments since she first reshared an op-ed that discussed people who menstruate with a transphobic comment. She doubled-down on her TERF stance with a follow-up thread on X where she proclaimed, “If sex isn’t real, the lived reality of women globally is erased.” She further expanded saying that she loved trans people, “but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives.”

It’s been downhill from there. Thankfully, numerous Harry Potter alums, including Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and Harry Potter himself, Daniel Radcliffe, have spoken out against Rowling’s transphobic views. Radcliffe even went as far as penning an op-ed about cutting ties with Rowling in 2020 and continues to be an active support of major LGBTQ+ nonprofits like the Trevor Project.

Granted, one of the main issues that millions of Harry Potter fans seem to have is separating the art that impacted them from the transphobic artist that continues to spread harm. Needless to say, Seattle’s Museum of Pop Culture staff have wrestled with this too. But for the museum, their goal seems to be to honor the work that the cast and crew have created, in spite of Rowling’s connection. 

“While the Harry Potter series is a major player in the pop culture sphere, we wanted to give credit to the work of the actors, prop makers, and costume designers in our Fantasy gallery,” added Moore. “We learned that ‘You-Know-Who’ was a problem, which is why you’ll see the artifacts without any mention or image of the author. After all, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint are all incredibly vocal allies. Should we forget their work now that the original author is terrible?”

While the museum acknowledges this isn’t the “perfect solution” it’s a step towards finding a permanent one for the time being. 

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