JK Rowling recently followed up a series of tweets asserting the reality and importance of sex with an eloquent essay on her reasons for breaking this strange new taboo. One reason was that, as a survivor of male violence, Rowling understood why women need single-sex spaces.
Cue a deluge of manipulative articles proclaiming how 'hurtful' these reasons were to trans people, and studiously avoiding engaging with the substance of what Rowling wrote. She foresaw the response:
"Endlessly unpleasant as its constant targeting of me has been, I refuse to bow down to a movement that I believe is doing demonstrable harm in seeking to erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class and offering cover to predators like few before it."
Each tweet was greeted by a tsunami of misogynistic hatred and abuse despite being, on the face of it, completely uncontroversial. The response perfectly illustrated Rowling's point. The tweet below was published by an Elizabeth Warren staffer.
Following on the heels of her Harry Potter co-star, and the actor who played a tragic transexual in The Danish Girl, social justice influencer and actress Emma Watson chimed in to distance herself from from the political opinions of the woman without whose creativity she would not be giving speeches to a packed house at the United Nations, or even acting in films. Notably, Watson—who self-identifies as a feminist—said nothing about Rowling's trauma. Not one word of sympathy or support.
Instead, Watson used the occasion to support for the concept of gender self-identification, i.e. all it takes for a person to transform into the opposite sex is to say the magic words "I am a woman" etc, and all doors into single-sex space should open to them. Of course, this is pure fantasy befitting someone who built a name on the Potter franchise.
What is deeply troubling is that Watson proceeds to declare that she funds the pediatric transitioning lobby group Mermaids. Mermaids is an extremely controversial organization. Its founder flew her 16-year-old male child to Thailand to have his genitals removed, just in advance of the procedure being outlawed for under-18-year-olds. It has been ordered, by a judge, to stop contacting a family it purported to help. It also has links to a doctor who was struck off the medical register for prescribing puberty blockers and cross sex hormones to children unlawfully.
Mermaids has been pivotal in mainstreaming the idea that children can be "born in the wrong body," and that the 'cure' for autism, or emerging homosexuality, is to halt normal pubertal development with a view to surgical removal of children's healthy reproductive organs. In response to intense criticism, the National Health Service just changed its advice on pediatric transitioning to reflect the fact there is no evidence base for these treatments, and that they cause unquantifiable harm to brain, bone and heart health.
This enthusiasm for dismantling women's sex-based rights represents a volte face from Watson's earlier understanding of her place in the world, as a woman, and the social impact of being female. Back in 2016, in an extended conversation with Gloria Steinem, they discussed topics such as male dominance, the patriarchal hierarchy, body hatred, the etymology of the word "pornography" (images of a female captive for sale), the forced closure of a feminist library, and having felt like they were going to be killed by men for speaking out about women's rights, "authentically, as myself, as Emma."
Of course, when the conversation was reported it on, it was trivialized on the basis that one of the topics discussed was masturbation and female orgasms, a topic which requires a clear understanding of reproductive biology. Nonetheless, it is worth a listen.
Watson said that the sex ratio globally was now "101.3 men to every 100 women on the planet, so women are no longer half of humanity" due to interlinked sex causes. Steinem, who had given Watson a copy of the book Sex & World Peace, declared that violence against women is the greatest security dilemma of our time, Watson noting that it has killed more people "than all the wars of the C20th combined."
Although one can speculate that Watson was virtue-signalling the orthodox opinion, in a bid to avoid being cancelled (after all, JK is too big to cancel, but Watson is not), it is nothing short of tragic that a young woman with a worldwide platform and the attention of millions could fall from having such clear-eyed feminist insight, to conforming to anti-feminist pressures of trans activism, and to go as far as to fund and promote the sterilization of innocent children in the name of a misogynistic, homophobic ideology.
This writer hopes that, now that one of the most famous women in the world has articulated her criticisms of gender ideology, Watson will join the dots and—even more important—lend a hand to the ordinary women who have been fighting this battle for eight long years. After all, everyone makes mistakes, especially when they're young and eager to please all and sundry.
Hermione Grainger was a tenacious, knowledge-seeking, independent-minded little girl. Perhaps the qualities in Watson which made her eligible for that role will stand her in good stead, and she will work out that she has been duped into abandoning her feminism.