J K Rowling Explains

There is an article by Anita Singh in yesterday’s Daily Telegraph which gives some insight into why Ms Rowling took on the Scottish National Party and Nicola Sturgeon in the Big Trans Row.

J K Rowling

“J K Rowling has defended her stance on women-only spaces by stating the ’98-99 percent of sexual offences are caused by those born with penises.’ The Harry Potter author said she felt a ‘moral obligation’ to take on trans activists who had adopted ‘the attitude of the fundamentalist’. Those close to Rowling had implored her not to enter the debate. ‘There were people close to me who were begging me not to do it,’ she said in the latest episode of The Witch Trials of J K Rowling podcast. But Rowling said she had no choice but to stand up against ‘a movement that I see as authoritarian, illiberal. I think I have a very realistic view, not a scaremongering view, on what may happen when you loosen boundaries around single sex spaces for women and girls,’ she said. ‘I can already hear the screams of outrage: ‘You are saying that trans people are all predators.’ Of course I am not, any more than I’m saying all men are predators. I have good men in my life who are among my favourite people. But I am also aware the 98-99 percent of sexual offences are caused by those born with penises. The problem is male violence.’

According to the Crime Survey for England and Wales, between 2017 and 2020, the 98 percent of victims who had experienced rape or assault by penetration since they were 16 years old reported that the perpetrator was male. Data also show that in the year ending in June, of the 6,403 people convicted of serious sexual offences, 6,223 were male – or 97.2 percent.

On why she felt moved to act, Rowling said: ‘I had been becoming increasingly concerned about the way in which women were being shut down. I was starting to see activists behaving in a very aggressive way outside feminist meetings. I’m looking at an assault now on freedom of speech, freedom of thought, even freedom of association.'”

It seems to me that some trans activists have lost the distinction between Respect and Rights in a democracy. Like any other person, a trans individual is entitled to our Respect. But Rights and Freedoms in a democracy are not unlimited. Rights and Freedoms can be trumped by individual Safety, Privacy and Fairness, as is the case with women-only spaces and most women’s sporting competitions.

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