After a Kennedy Slam, JK Rowling Gives Back Award

'Harry Potter' author blasts RFK daughter Kerry Kennedy for implying she's transphobic
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2020 8:04 AM CDT
After a Kennedy Slam, JK Rowling Gives Back Award
In this Nov. 8, 2018, file photo, writer JK Rowling is seen at the world premiere of the film "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald" in Paris.   (AP Photo/Christophe Ena, file)

JK Rowling's take on transgender issues has earned her a fair share of controversy. Now, it's prompted her to return a prestigious honor. Per the BBC, the Harry Potter author received the Ripple of Hope Award last year from the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights group. It's an award that "celebrates outstanding leaders who have demonstrated a commitment to social change" and "utilized their platform for the public good," per Forbes. Then Kerry Kennedy, who is RFK's daughter and the president of the organization, came out with a message earlier this month. "Over the course of June 2020—LGBTQ Pride Month—and much to my dismay, JK Rowling posted deeply troubling transphobic tweets and statements," she wrote, detailing some of the offending posts and explaining Rowling had originally received the group's award for her work on behalf of children.

"I have spoken with JK Rowling to express my profound disappointment that she has chosen to use her remarkable gifts to create a narrative that diminishes the identity of trans and nonbinary people, undermining the validity and integrity of the entire transgender community," Kennedy noted. Rowling hit back Thursday with a post of her own, explaining she is returning her award because she disagrees with the group's assertion "that there is no conflict between the current radical trans rights movement and the rights of women." She also took Kennedy personally to task. "The statement incorrectly implied that I was transphobic, and that I am responsible for harm to trans people," Rowling wrote. "As a long-standing donor to LGBT charities and a supporter of trans people's right to live free of persecution, I absolutely refute the accusation that I hate trans people or wish them ill, or that standing up for the rights of women is wrong, discriminatory, or incites harm or violence to the trans community." (More JK Rowling stories.)

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