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Daniel Radcliffe won't apologize for standing up to J.K. Rowling's transphobia

Daniel Radcliffe won't apologize for standing up to J.K. Rowling's transphobia

daniel radcliffe jk rowling
Theo Wargo/Getty Images; Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for for Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights

The former Harry Potter star says he "will continue to support the rights of all LGBTQ+ people."

13 years after Harry Potter, Daniel Radcliffe is still proudly fighting against dark forces.

Radcliffe, now 34, was profiled recently by The Atlantic about how he's successfully shaped his career and life after starring as a child actor in one of the biggest film franchises of all time.

While the interview covers many aspects of his life, one of the most interesting is when The Atlantic brought up Harry Potter author and creator J.K. Rowling's increasingly hateful and ignorant speech against transgender people.

In a recent X (formerly Twitter) exchange, Rowling stated that she would not forgive Harry Potter stars like Radcliffe and Emma Watson for speaking out in favor of trans rights, or as she said, cozying "up to a movement intent on eroding women's hard-won rights."

When asked about that statement, Radcliffe only said, "I will continue to support the rights of all LGBTQ+ people, and have no further comment than that."

Back in 2019 and 2020, Rowling made some tweets that were very clearly transphobic, and Radcliffe, who had been working with The Trevor Project for over a decade at that point, responded in a statement made through that organization.

"I realize that certain press outlets will probably want to paint this as in-fighting between J. K. Rowling and myself, but that is really not what this is about, nor is it what’s important right now," he said. "Transgender women are women. Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I."

"I'd worked with the Trevor Project for 12 years and it would have seemed like, I don't know, immense cowardice to me to not say something," Radcliffe told The Atlantic about looking back at that time. I wanted to try and help people that had been negatively affected by the comments. And to say that if those are Jo's views, then they are not the views of everybody associated with the Potter franchise."

Since then, Rowling only got more hateful, ignorant, and right wing in her beliefs and statements.

"It makes me really sad, ultimately," Radcliffe said. "Because I do look at the person that I met, the times that we met, and the books that she wrote, and the world that she created, and all of that is to me so deeply empathic."

"Jo, obviously Harry Potter would not have happened without her, so nothing in my life would have probably happened the way it is without that person," he said, addressing the idea that people say he should be grateful to Rowling for giving him a career. "But that doesn't mean that you owe the things you truly believe to someone else for your entire life."

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Mey Rude

Mey Rude is a journalist and cultural critic who has been covering queer news for a decade. The transgender, Latina lesbian lives in Los Angeles with her fiancée.

Mey Rude is a journalist and cultural critic who has been covering queer news for a decade. The transgender, Latina lesbian lives in Los Angeles with her fiancée.