27 votes

J.K. Rowling's Maya Forstater tweets support hostile work environments, not free speech

10 comments

  1. [2]
    Leonidas
    Link
    It's crucially important to expose this harassment and hatred for what it is, especially given the way these attempts at neutral framing by TERFs have been used to entrap people and lend false...

    It's crucially important to expose this harassment and hatred for what it is, especially given the way these attempts at neutral framing by TERFs have been used to entrap people and lend false support for their ideology. There was a minor crisis on Twitter when people saw that Mark Hamill was one of the people who liked Rowling's tweet, especially given his statements of support for trans people in the past. However, when the true nature of the tweet was brought to his attention, he apologized and clarified his pro-trans stance. I also had a similar conversation in miniature with one of my mutuals on the site, who had retweeted Rowling, but seeing how so many people had been duped by its vague wording, I messaged them and they said they hadn't known either.

    21 votes
    1. cfabbro
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      The thing I despise most about TERFs is not their entrapment of the unwitting with neutral framing, but their attempts to somehow twist the just punishments they receive for being blatantly...

      The thing I despise most about TERFs is not their entrapment of the unwitting with neutral framing, but their attempts to somehow twist the just punishments they receive for being blatantly discriminatory into claims that they are somehow the "real" victims of discrimination. It's such a disgusting subversion of the concept of discrimination, and a blatant attempt to undermine anti-descimination laws, that it drives me insane... and the fact that otherwise non-bigoted people are suddenly coming out of the woodwork to support them purely because of the flimsy "free speech" argument drives me even more insane.

      This article did a really good job of dissecting all the standard TERF bullshit tactics, and then debunking them though, so kudos to NBC news for publishing it!

      17 votes
  2. ibis
    Link
    What I really dislike about JKRs tweet (besides the obvious transphobia) is how dishonest it is. She used her enormous platform to give a version of the events (which 90% of her followers probably...

    What I really dislike about JKRs tweet (besides the obvious transphobia) is how dishonest it is. She used her enormous platform to give a version of the events (which 90% of her followers probably aren't familiar with) that is downright wrong. Maya was not forced out of her job for stating that sex is real. I don't think even JKR could believe that. She is using her platform to mislead people in order to fuel hatred against trans people and the victim complex of transphobes.

    The thing is, this isn't even the first time she's used this technique. When she released a statement supporting Johnny Depp, she misrepresented the joint statement that Amber Heard (or her lawyers) agreed to, and gave the (false) impression that even Amber Heard wanted Depp to get the role and to move on. Heard spoke out saying it was a misrepresentation, but the statement is still on her website, unchanged.

    13 votes
  3. Grawlix
    (edited )
    Link
    I had an exhausting interaction on reddit where someone asked why people think Rowling is a transphobe. Obviously they set the goalposts to her explicitly saying transphobic things, and merely...

    I had an exhausting interaction on reddit where someone asked why people think Rowling is a transphobe. Obviously they set the goalposts to her explicitly saying transphobic things, and merely being a public supporter of transphobes wasn't enough. Clearly, they asked for what she said because they knew damn well why people called her transphobic.

    Sure enough, with the barest of prodding, the people defending Rowling as not being a transphobe easily revealed themselves as transphobes. "What she says can't be transphobic, because it's true that trans women aren't women." Ugh. The comments on her Twitter are plenty of evidence: lots of disappointment and even heartbreak from the LGBT community and allies, and a ton of TERF defenders.

    13 votes
  4. [6]
    DanBC
    Link
    This article has a pretty good discussion of the Maya Forstater employment tribunal case (and it helpfully links to a PDF of the ruling), and it does a good job of explaining why Rowling was wrong...

    This article has a pretty good discussion of the Maya Forstater employment tribunal case (and it helpfully links to a PDF of the ruling), and it does a good job of explaining why Rowling was wrong to make her post.

    10 votes
    1. [5]
      skybrian
      Link Parent
      Could you share the link to the ruling? There are a lot of links in that article and the links aren't labelled very well, so somehow I missed it.

      Could you share the link to the ruling? There are a lot of links in that article and the links aren't labelled very well, so somehow I missed it.

      6 votes
      1. [4]
        DanBC
        Link Parent
        Here it is! https://drive.google.com/file/d/12P9zf82TicPs2cCxlTnm0TrNFDD8Gaz5/view
        7 votes
        1. [3]
          skybrian
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          I skimmed, but it looks like the ruling is not about whether she created a "hostile work environment" as the headline states, but by whether her beliefs are "protected philosophical beliefs" and...

          I skimmed, but it looks like the ruling is not about whether she created a "hostile work environment" as the headline states, but by whether her beliefs are "protected philosophical beliefs" and are entitled special employment protection, similar to religious beliefs. The ruling is that they are not. The law the complaint is based on says that protected philosophical beliefs must be "worthy of respect" and can't be "incompatible with human dignity" or "conflict with the fundamental rights of others." This seems to give judges fairly broad leeway to avoid protecting people who have abhorrent beliefs.

          It's unclear from the facts in the ruling whether she interacted with any co-workers about her beliefs at all, presumably because the ruling isn't based on that. The Tweets and Slack interactions seem to be cited to establish what her beliefs are.

          5 votes
          1. [2]
            DanBC
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            The judgement is about whether she would create a hostile work environment. Her belief had created the hostile environment. She doesn't need to interact with transpeople in the workplace to make...

            The judgement is about whether she would create a hostile work environment. Her belief had created the hostile environment. She doesn't need to interact with transpeople in the workplace to make the workplace hostile. She had declared, many times, that she would continue to refer to trans-women as men, and that she would do so in the workplace. During the trial she again said she would.

            The comments of the Judge about "incompatible with human dignity" are about dignity of workers in the workplace. This is, after all, an employment tribunal.

            3 votes
            1. skybrian
              Link Parent
              That's not how I read the ruling. Forester is the "Claimant." After her contract ended and she wasn't rehired, she filed a claim that she was being discriminated against for her "philosophical...

              That's not how I read the ruling. Forester is the "Claimant." After her contract ended and she wasn't rehired, she filed a claim that she was being discriminated against for her "philosophical beliefs." The ruling is that she doesn't deserve any special protection and her claim was denied.

              3 votes