J.K. Rowling has once again gone trending on the internet, and people are getting outraged over a character in her latest book Troubled Blood who is described to be a ‘transvestite serial killer.’ While several of Rowling’s acquaintances have gone on to publicly condemn her like Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson, Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid in the Harry Potter movies) has come to her defense.
Talking to RadioTimes (via Yahoo! Movies), Coltrane explained, “I don’t think what she said was offensive really. I don’t know why but there’s a whole Twitter generation of people who hang around waiting to be offended.” Coltrane adds, “They wouldn’t have won the war, would they? That’s me talking like a grumpy old man, but you just think, ‘Oh, get over yourself. Wise up, stand up straight and carry on.’”
If anything, you shouldn’t expect the 70-year-old Coltrane to make a solid stance like Rowling. He says, “I don’t want to get involved in all of that because of all the hate mail and all that s***, which I don’t need at my time of life”.
In recent months, Rowling has been branded as a TERF by the internet and has been criticized for making transphobic statements online. Yesterday the hashtag #RIPJKRowling has been going around, and thousands of tweets are coming out to cancel the Harry Potter author.
Personally, I think there is an error on both sides. While Rowling’s stance in its core is transphobic, the vitriol against her feels over the top and incredibly offensive. If anything, Rowling probably feels like some kind of martyr standing up to all this aggressive hate. I think the best way to meet Rowling on the issue is not to insult and slander her online, but to approach in a more civil and organized matter.
It’s kind of the same issue with The Mandalorian star Gina Carano. I guess the point is not to fight hate with hate.