JK Rowling has renewed her attack on President-elect Donald Trump, describing him as a “bigot” while calling on writers to “defend truth” against him.
The Harry Potter author – already a vocal Trump critic – laid in again during an end-of-year message to supporters of writers’ group PEN America.
She warned that American institutions are in “potential jeopardy” thanks to his triumph.
But unlike other Trump opponents, Rowling defended his right to say what he wants, and said it was up to his adversaries to use their own free speech to oppose him.
Rowling sent her message via letter to PEN members in late December. It went public last night after a report in Scotland’s Daily Record newspaper.
The events of the last month have many Americans feeling shocked and disoriented.
So many issues are in flux and valued institutions in potential jeopardy.
Last May in New York City, to some gasps around the room, I defended Donald Trump’s freedom of expression.
I said then that “His freedom to speak protects my freedom to call him a bigot.”
Donald Trump has taken full advantage of his freedom of speech – it is now up to the rest of us to use ours.
PEN America are galvanizing a community of writers and readers across the US and the world to safeguard open expression, amplify the voices of the vulnerable, defend truth against lies, and counter hate speech.
Never has this work mattered more than it does today. If we don’t speak now, we risk forfeiting our right to speak later.
You can watch the gala appearance Rowling referred to below:
During the address she opposed calls by some in her native United Kingdom to bar Trump from entering the country – which was signed by more than half a million people but slapped down by the Government.
I find almost everything that Mr. Trump says objectionable… I consider him offensive and bigoted. But, he has my full support to come to my country and be offensive and bigoted there.
Unless we take that absolute position without caveats or apologies, we have set foot upon a road with only one destination.
If my offended feelings can justify a travel ban on Donald Trump, I have no moral grounds upon which to argue that those offended by feminism, or the fight for transgender rights, or universal suffrage, should not oppress campaigners for those cause.
If you seek the removal of freedom from an opponent simply because they have offended you, you have crossed the line to stand alongside tyrants who imprison, torture and kill with exactly the same justification.