Trans of Thought: Good riddance 2019

By : Maia Monet
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I almost killed myself two or three times in 2019. I know that sounds dramatic, but it is also true. I’m not saying this to garner sympathy, or even worse, elicit advice. Rest assured, I am taking the steps necessary to improve my state of mind. It is just that being trans can often feel like existing in a vat of acid eating away at your dignity and integrity. It is the rare trans person who hasn’t contemplated escaping the pain through drastic means. If you don’t believe me, find a trans person in your life you happen to be close to and ask them if they’ve ever created a suicide plan. Don’t be surprised if they have a ready answer.

Perhaps my first column of the year should be about looking forward with a sense of optimism, but that doesn’t reflect my life as part of the trans community. I sometimes wonder if cisgender people appreciate how difficult it is to be transgender in today’s world. They might be able to quote the suicide rate for trans people, but I suspect they are detached from the reality of our everyday lives. They don’t actually experience the emotional stress of hearing about yet another government policy meant to incrementally erase the legal status of trans people. They can’t comprehend the blinding fear of coming out as a trans woman to a cisgender heterosexual man who might decide violence is the appropriate response.

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J.K. Rowling sparks backlash after tweeting support for British woman fired for transphobic comments

By : Jeremy Williams
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ABOVE: J.K. Rowling in 2010. (Photo by Daniel Ogren, from Flickr)

J.K. Rowling, author of the massively popular Harry Potter series, sparked intimidate backlash after tweeting support for Maya Forstater, a researcher on business and international development who was fired from The Center for Global Development (CGD) in London after comments that were seen as transphobic.

“Dress however you please. Call yourself whatever you like. Sleep with any consenting adult who’ll have you. Live your best life in peace and security. But force women out of their jobs for stating that sex is real? #IStandWithMaya #ThisIsNotADrill,” Rowling tweeted Dec. 19.

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The Tender Activist: Harry Potter & the Dark Art of Othering

By : Scottie Campbell
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I was in a planning meeting for a Harry Potter-focused event and the lead of the meeting thought it would be a fun idea to go around the table and introduce ourselves and say what house we’re in. At this point, I had only managed to get through one chapter of the first book, I had seen the movies and ridden the Orlando rides, but I had not chosen a house (or let a talking hat do it for me) nor did I care. So when it was my turn, my answer to the house question was: “I am none of that.”

You would have thought my nose had fallen off and I had revealed myself to be He Who Must Not Be Named himself. Every drop of oxygen was sucked out of the room and I was immediately transported back to middle school when I had decided to try-out for basketball without knowing how to actually play basketball. How all my friends and classmates appeared to intuitively know how to play is still a mystery to me. I’m confident Mister Rogers would have been proud of me for trying, but as I was dribbling toward the coach, and could clearly see in his eyes that I didn’t know what I was doing, I wanted to be anywhere else. Six feet under would have been a welcome relief.

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Jude Law defends Dumbledore not being ‘explicitly’ gay in ‘Fantastic Beasts’

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Jude Law, who will portray a young Albus Dumbledore in the upcoming “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald,” defended the controversial decision to not make Dumbledore “explicitly” gay in the film.

In 2007, Rowling revealed that Dumbledore is gay and had romantic feelings for his friend Grindelwald when he was younger. As the “Fantastic Beasts” series includes a young Dumbledore and Grindelwald some fans were excited to see gay representation in the film. However, director David Yates shared that Dumbledore’s sexuality would not be “explicitly” addressed. The announcement caused an outcry in the fandom.

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Screened Out – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

By : Stephen Miller
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Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterson, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Samantha Morton, Colin Farrell, Carmen Ejogo, Jon Voight

Really, it should be called Fantastic Bits and Where to Find Them. They’re here – the magical moments Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has always provided – spread throughout this, her first direct-to-film writing. However, her many, many, many ideas would really wow us if they strongly connected to each other.

You do have Newt Scamader (Redmayne), bringing his case of magical creatures into 1920s New York. For Potter fans – and I fully admit I’m one of them – this is wondrous stuff. Because we remember Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is the famous textbook Harry Potter uses under Hagrid’s tutelage. We’ve heard of Newt before, but we didn’t know his back-story.

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